The Flyers came into this season with a lot of changes, and with that, a lot of unknowns. The biggest doubt in my mind was that the overall product would be a good team. So far, the team has been very fun to watch, thanks to Peter Laviolette’s aggressive system. I’m not completely blown away by this group like I had been with last years. Yesterday, I went over the things that I do like. Today is my list of things I don’t like about the team.
The defense: I don’t just mean the 6 blueliners; I’m talking about the entire team defense. We give up tons of horrible opportunities to other teams. How the hell did we give up 9 goal in one game? How do we not clear the porch? We’ve been leaving our goalies out to dry and then blame them for having terrible numbers. We turn the puck over in the zone, a lot, and then wonder why Bryzgalov isn’t leading the league in every category after we paid him a lot of money. We need to get a lot more disciplined and start playing positions a lot better.
The scoring: Yesterday I wrote this was one of the things I liked. I liked that after the top line, we had goals chipped in from all over the place. What worries me is the fact that I’m not sure if we can sustain it over the long haul. I keep going back to last year because that team just seemed so much more stacked. We had 3 lines that would attack in waves. We had tons of talent that fit well together. Now it seems like a guy will step up here and there for a few games, followed by another guy. I just want a bit more stability. I don’t want to rely completely on Giroux and Jagr. They need to lead us, but if they get shut down, I don’t want the entire offense to completely collapse.
Danny Briere - He’s scored a few timely goals. That’s nice. But does he look anywhere as effective as he has the last few seasons? Is he a threat every single time he’s on the ice? I don’t think he’s been as good this year as he normally is. Forget the argument about stepping up when it really counts. We know there’s no such thing as an on/off switch for athletes. We can’t expect him to go up 10 levels once the playoffs begin. I want to see him controlling the puck a lot more, setting up his teammates more, and just being more visible.
JVR - What a disappoint he’s been so far. Once again, the numbers do not tell the full story. Where the hell is the drive he showed us last season in the playoffs? Like Giroux, he was supposed to benefit from more playing time. He was supposed to become an elite player and finally live up to the hype that goes with being a 2nd overall pick. Yet, there have already been too many games where he has barely been visible. He’s a big guy that just doesn’t use his size and strength nearly enough. He should be driving the puck at the net on a regular basis.
Not defending home ice: As great as we’ve been on the road, we’ve been been equally mediocre at home. 4-3-2 n our own building is pathetic. Washington and St. Louis came here on back to back games and whipped us. The Devils overcame a 2-0 hole to beat us in a shootout. You aren’t supposed to lose 2 goals leads to anyone, anywhere, let alone to a division rival in your house. I don’t even want to mention the Jets anymore.
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Topics: 2011-12 Nhl Season, Claude Giroux, Danny Briere, Ice Hockey, Ilya Bryzgalov, Jaromir Jagr, JVR, New Jersey Devils, NHL, Peter Laviolette, Philadelphia Flyers, St. Louis Blues, Washington Capitals, What I Don't Like About These Flyers, Winnipeg Jets