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Flyers look to regroup, retake series lead vs. Montreal in Game 3

Let’s just pretend like Game 2 never happened, because my goodness was it ever a dumpster fire.

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Montreal Canadiens v Philadelphia Flyers - Game Two Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

After an unmitigated disaster in a 5-0 loss in Game 2, the Flyers are at a crossroads ahead of the Game 3 in their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series against the Montreal Canadiens.

Despite limping to a 2-1 win in Game 1 largely on the heroics of Carter Hart in net, the Flyers had no such success in Game 2 as the Canadiens blitzed them right from puck drop and didn’t look back in a butt kicking for the century.

Nothing went right for the Flyers and almost everything went right for Montreal —though they did create more of their own bounces via winning nearly every puck battle on the afternoon.

Game 2 was so bad for Philadelphia that it’s almost still shocking that it even happened. In the regular season a coach would likely send out a “burn the tape, don’t look back” type of vibe, but that’s hard to do in the playoffs where even one effort like that can be the difference between winning or losing a round.

To make matters worse, the Flyers also watched Travis Konecny leave with an apparent injury after blocking a shot. All eyes will be on the lineup card to see if the productive forward will be good to go, though he was seen on the ice for practice —an obviously good sign in terms of his availability for Game 3.

If there’s a silver lining following the Game 2 massacre, it’s that the Flyers can’t possibly play a worse game that than —and even going back to their Game 1 performance— they know they have to wake up and match Montreal’s willpower.

Also playing in the Flyers’ favor is that there isn’t one man in that locker room that can point to his play and say they haven’t been part of the problem through six periods of this series. Not one single player or coach otherwise.

One area where they could really turn things around would be on special teams, where the Flyers theoretically had a distinct advantage heading into the series. That hasn’t materialized as the power play has gone 1-for-8, including a missed 5-on-3 chance on Friday, while surrendering three power play goals to Montreal already.

If the Flyers truly are going to have their hands full with the Canadiens at 5-on-5 as the series has already suggested, they simply cannot afford to lose the special teams battles that decisively if they have any designs on advancing to the next round.

Getting any sort of production from the likes of Claude Giroux (1 point), Sean Couturier (0 points), Kevin Hayes (0 points), and Travis Konecny (0 points) inside the top-six would also help tremendously.


Flyers’ (subject to change) lineup:

Forwards

Giroux - Couturier - Farabee

Laughton - Hayes - Konecny

Voracek - Grant - Aube-Kubel

JVR - Thompson - Pitlick

Defensemen

Provorov - Niskanen

Sanheim - Myers

Gostisbehere - Braun

Goalies

Hart

(Elliott)


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