The Flyers dropped another preseason decision last night, this one a 2-1 shootout loss to the Rangers, but you already knew that. Let’s dive in a little deeper on this one before the team jets off to Europe.
Carter Hart, midseason form
After not allowing a goal on his first 25 shots of preseason action, Hart did in fact allow a goal in the first period of this one. Good news is it was a pretty bizarre goal that wasn’t in the same stratosphere as the duds Brian Elliott let in the other night. Hart came up with two big saves in the first five minutes, one one Tony DeAngelo and one on Chris Kreider right in the slot.
Scary moment though as Hart got plowed into by Vinni Lettieri while he tried to play the puck in the trapezoid in the first, but he was fine thankfully and no worse for wear. Lettieri would be taken to task by Scott Laughton later in the period, hopefully showing the Flyers brass that there is at least one guy on the team ready to be tough and stand up for his teammates.
In the end Hart stopped 30 of 31 shots in the loss, going toe-for-toe with the future Hall of Famer across the ice and showing that’s he’s ready for the regular season and to be a difference maker for the Flyers.
Joel Farabee, NHLer
While his chances to make the team opening night are seemingly getting better and better with each roster cut, the onus is still on the former BU star to prove he’s worth it. And boy did he in this one, showing the well-rounded game that gives him the ability to make the jump from the college ranks right to the NHL.
He started the night with a great chance early off a centering feed from Raffl, but couldn’t solve Henrik Lundqvist. Then he beat the netminder, but hit the post behind Lundqvist on the Flyers’ first power play of the night. On the first chance he found the scoring area and wasn’t afraid to go to the net while he showed a sweet release on the shot that rang iron. He’s had too many chances this preseason for them not to turn into goals before long.
In the second period Farabee came up with a nice takeaway at the Rangers blue line to setup a Michael Raffl scoring chance. He followed that up by ringing another wrist shot off the post behind Lundqvist in the third period. Again, no dice, but Farabee was easily one of the best players on the ice, and a sheet that included a bunch of NHL players who will be on the opening night roster.
Hey Phil, K.I.S.S.
After essentially telling Philippe Myers through the media that his roster spot was far from locked up, the Flyers’ bench boss offered that perhaps the 22-year-old defenseman was trying to do too much and it was in turn causing some problems for himself.
Back in the lineup in this one we saw a more calm and composed Myers, as he tried to reap the advice from his coach and simplify his game against the Rangers. Though the Flyers likely don’t want to see Myers’ aggressive style go away completely, they’d like him to play a little more under control at times —especially around his own blue line, where turnovers have led to goals behind him quickly.
Myers responded with a cleaner game during his nearly 18 minutes of ice time, but could have also gotten a boost from the fact that Travis Sanheim didn’t seem to be himself out there and posted a rather lackluster effort. Regardless of what Sanheim did, it’s good to see Myers take some feedback from the coaching staff and apply it almost immediately. Before NaturalStatTrick had a meltdown, Myers was on-pace for an effective night in the possession department, something that hasn’t been the case in recent games.
Power (less) play
Even though we’re inching closer to having a complete look at what the NHL roster will be coming opening night, there’s still plenty of changes to come which makes evaluation a special teams unit during the preseason tricky.
That said, the Flyers power play didn’t have much juice in this one. They went 0-for-3 on the extra man and only generated six shots on the night. They also blew a golden opportunity to seal this game in overtime on a Ryan Strome tripping penalty before losing in the shootout.
It wasn’t all bad, though, as they generated plenty of zone time on that final power play look, but just couldn’t get one past Lundqvist —who was really sharp. Okay, so they did give up a pretty good chance shorthanded, but Hart was there with a big pad save. In any event, they need to get better results out of a power play that finished just 18th last season, and there wasn’t a ton to show this preseason that improvement will actually happen and Thursday night didn’t exactly help.
GIFs of the night: Travis Konecny is such a rat
Things you love to see:— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) September 26, 2019
The man is a pest and a rat, but most definitely a f****** Flyer.