Ahead of Tuesday’s meeting with the horrific Arizona Coyotes, the Philadelphia Flyers shuffled the lineup on their power play a little bit, and there is one distinct promotion. Cam Atkinson is now on the top unit and all it took was scoring six goals in seven games.
Now with a five-man unit of Sean Couturier, Travis Konecny, Ivan Provorov, Claude Giroux, and Atkinson; the Flyers have a lot of firepower to unload on teams that are hopefully not paying attention shorthanded. There is one player that is slightly more appreciative of the lineup switch compared to most.
“When [Atkinson] was in Columbus, I saw a player where he works, he battles, he can put the puck in the net; you always think a little bit, ‘Oh, I would like to play with him.’” Giroux said on Monday.
“This is our opportunity to see if the chemistry is there, see if it works. He likes to shoot and I like to pass it, so I don’t see why it wouldn’t work.”
There’s certainly nothing wrong in there. Atkinson (obviously) leads the Flyers in goals scored and Giroux is keeping his reputation alive by sustaining a point-per-game rate. As the Flyers captain said, there is no reason why this combination — in addition to the other skilled players on that unit — shouldn’t work.
Especially considering that they are currently slotted as the two wings in the typical 1-3-1 power play formation, they could be potential for cross-ice passes from Giroux to relay perfectly on to the tape of Atkinson’s stick — or even for him to get his patented in-tight tally after a quick little skate around some penalty killers. There will certainly be enough talent for whatever desperate shorthanded unit gets sent out there against those top dudes, to get distracted with and not pay attention to at least one of them.
Hopefully Giroux gets rewarded for his year-old wish and sets up Cam for some rockets on the man advantage. A game against the Coyotes is certainly one to try something new out.