It’s been almost two months since the rivalry between the Capitals and Flyers hit the ice for another installment. When these two teams met the first time the Caps were undefeated and looked like the early season story, but then everything came crashing down. Alexander Ovechkin played like a shadow of himself, got benched by Bruce Boudreau who was then subsequently sent to the bench in the unemployment office by GM George McPhee after the team went through a stretch of six losses in eight games.
For the Flyers the 5-2 loss to the Capitals back on October 20th was the beginning of the first roller coaster ride for goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov. He preceded to lose three straight games, including the 9-8 game to the Jets, but that was so two months ago.
Bryz has won five straight games, four of which have come against quality opponents (@PHX, @BUF, PIT, TBL). In those five games his stats have been as such: 114-for-127, .889 SV%, 2.6 GAA. The save percentage is better than what it was during the horrid October stretch, but it still isn’t where it needs to be. He gave up 13 goals in that 5 game span, which is ok with the offensive changes after the lockout, but only one of those teams (PIT) rank in the top five in goals scored. Buffalo ranks 16th, Pheonix 17th, Tampa Bay 21st, and Anaheim 27th in that category. Yes he has been able to gain some steam on the confidence train, but it was a run that was expected against such mediocre offenses.
Now he did leave Saturday’s game against the Lightning with 13 minutes left with a right leg injury, but according to CSN’s Sarah Baicker number 30 will be ready to go tomorrow night.