The Flyers are proving to be perhaps most inconsistent team in the NHL. They can hang with and defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins one night, shutting down their bonafide stars successfully, but then a night later, they get smoked by one of the league's worst teams.
* Matt Read has four goals against the Florida Panthers this year. Maybe the Flyers just expected him to score them all tonight, too. Hard to do when he's out for six weeks.
* Ilya Bryzgalov looks frustrated, and he probably deserves to be. He threw his stick at the glass after one of Florida's first period goals tonight, and CSN reported that he did the same during the morning skate in Pittsburgh yesterday. I've noticed him yelling at defensemen multiple times this season as well. He's been the team's best player, he's played a ton of hockey over the first half of this season, and the team results aren't there. I'd be annoyed too.
* The narrative of tonight's game will likely be that the Flyers just didn't get up for the game after the emotion on Wednesday's win. A trap game. But that's a cop out. The Flyers had energy, they skated well, they controlled the game off the opening draw. But they didn't capitalize on an early PP chance and Florida capitalized on their own early chances. It snowballed from there.
* The first Florida goal was the result of a great shift by Peter Mueller & Co. against a line of Harry Zolnierczyk, Sean Couturier and Zac Rinaldo. I'm not sure what Peter Laviolette was looking for in terms of a matchup here, but if anything this line is supposed to outwork the other team. Mueller kept the puck in at least once on this shift with nice board work, then found wide open space in the slot to rip home the goal with a nice assist.
* The second Florida goal was the result of an awful Flyers breakout. A missed breakout pass turned into an easy turnover and a Panthers break. Need those passes to connect when they're dangerous through the neutral zone like that.
* Jonathan Huberdeau's penalty shot move .... yikes.
* Kimmo Timonen said the team was tired. Understandable, I guess, but again, this game swung on early bounces. The Flyers had legs at the beginning of the game. I don't buy that tired legs were the reason.
* If they were tired, Laviolette used the lopsided score to even things up a bit. Each defenseman played around 20 minutes -- nothing lopsided going on in terms of ice time tonight, because there was no need.
* Did you turn off the game in the middle of the third period? We wouldn't blame you.
Maybe they'll be the good Flyers on Saturday afternoon vs. Winnipeg. Maybe.
Questions with Answers
1. How does Lavi configure the lines with Read likely out?
Not much mix up, which is surprising for Laviolette especially during a loss. Tye McGinn just took Read's spot on the top line and played all night with Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek.
2. Does tonight turn into a trap game?
Technically, I guess so, but we talked about this above.
3. Can Jakub Voracek stay red-hot?
Voracek had five shots on goal by himself and two other attempts that missed. He scored in the third when the game was over. May have been the Flyers' best forward again.
4. Jonathan Huberdeau leads Florida in scoring and has been streaking lately. Can the Flyers stop him?
Comment of the Night
Really sucked cat farts tonight.
>> J. Wil, with some sort of Panthers reference I guess