The Flyers are coming off a fun win against an injury-ridden Detroit team, but hopefully fans will take that win with a grain of salt. Going into tonight's game with any form of confidence, or even optimism, would be stupid.
I'm starting to think it's impossible to oversell how good the Anaheim Ducks are. This season marks club records for best season start, most goals scored, and fewest goals allowed. Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry are ranked third and fifth, respectively, in point-getting. The Ducks are second best in the league in the power play, third best in the penalty kill. To top it all off, over the past twenty five games played, they've lost four. Four.
Calling the team lethal is an understatement, I'm afraid.
Of course, this isn't to say that they're unbeatable. The Ducks are trying to rebound after a 4-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild where they let themselves get behind early on and were unable to surmount a comeback. Even so, that hasn't been the case for the Ducks usually, as they've won 11 of their last twenty five after coming back from a deficit. The loss also marks only their second regulation loss at home all season.
Just so we're clear: the Ducks are good when playing with a lead or a disadvantage, good when playing against the Eastern or the Western Conference, good when playing up a man or down. They're just plain good. And with a Flyers team that is struggling to stay relevant approaching the Olympic break, Anaheim with be looking to knock off a clearly weaker opponent.
If the Flyers are able to put up some numbers early, and that's a big if, they'll need to play solidly throughout sixty minutes because it's clear that the Ducks can change the course of a game with no problem.
Bottom line: don't go into this game expecting magic. Go into it expecting to see the Flyers to play middle of the road hockey and expecting to see Anaheim take advantage of that.
It's a late one, folks, and the Bible says not to go to bed angry. Well, good luck with that one, Flyers.