Did you see how happy Danny Briere was when he scored the empty netter against the Devils two days ago? He broke his huge scoring drought, and he couldn’t hide his emotions after the puck crossed the line.
Has anyone had a more up and down career as a Flyer than him? First, he signs a fat contract, and proceeds to stink for the first few years. Then he blows up during the 2010 playoffs, and gets a reputation as a big game player. He follows that up by having a pretty good season last year, and once again putting up some really good playoff numbers. This season, he’s been mostly invisible, seeming to regress back to his first few years here. We thought he was going to break out after notching a hat trick against Ottawa back in January. Instead, that would be the last time he scored up until two days ago.
Generally speaking, when guys are used to scoring goals go on a drought, it messes with them. They start playing out of character, and try to do too much. Over the last few weeks, as the entire team has started to play better, I’ve noticed Briere getting back to being creative. He’s engineered a decent amount of chances, and has simply failed to capitalize on his own. He’s whiffed on perfect set-up’s, and fired wide on empty nets. It happens to everyone from time to time, but it was especially annoying for a guy who is supposed to score a lot to have it happen to him on such a consistent basis.
So maybe that has ended. Or maybe it was just lucky that he had an empty net to shoot at and he’ll continue to struggle against goalies. But he can’t think like that. The only thing that matters is that he scored. And now we’re down to the final 13 games of the regular season. Now is the time to take anything that is positive, and use it for confidence and inspiration. Now is the time when he gets back in the scoring column and becomes a threat. The playoffs will be here soon. We don’t need a black hole on the roster, we need Mr. Clutch.
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