Now that the dust has settled from last night, the Flyers have six days until their next game with the New York Rangers.
The franchise is off to its worst start in team history and a poor effort against the Penguins only intensified the pressure. Turnovers continue to plague the orange and black. Three of the Penguins’ four goals were a result of sloppy defensive play.
Scoring, once again, was one of the many problems last night. The Flyers pumped 25 shots on Marc-Andre Fluery last night, but 23 of them were blocked. During the first two periods, the Penguins outshot the Flyers 29-13. In the second period alone, the Penguins put 17 shots on net to the Flyers five.
Almost every article you’ll read will point out the negatives of last night: A poor effort against a heated rival, the overall absence of captain Claude Giroux, the ineffectiveness of the offense, the list goes on and on. Believe it or not, there were some positives to last night’s game.
- Giroux, Brayden Schenn and Sean Couturier won 60 percent of their faceoffs.
- Since stepping in for Andrej Meszaros, Erik Gustafsson has played well. Last night he logged 20:12 of ice time, second to Mark Streit.
- Steve Mason was, once again, solid in net. He stopped 31 of 34 shots.
- This was the last game until Oct. 24.
That last point is a positive in three ways. One, this team gets away from game action to let the losses burn inside them. If this 1-7 start does not get a fire under them, nothing will. Two, a break is needed to recharge the batteries and get away from the situation. The Flyers can take this time and refocus on getting this season back on track. Three, Craig Berube finally has a stretch to dive deeper into his system and let his players study it. Since his hiring eleven days ago, Berube has only had six non-game days to teach his strategy. With this break, Berube and the team can fully focus on learning a new system.
This team is not a quick fix away, but these next six days can benefit them. They can look at film and figure out the little things that add up to a win. Maybe today will be the start of something new for the team, or maybe the current trend will continue, and the Flyers will sink further into the Eastern Conference. Whatever does happen is up to them.