The Flyers had one of the best power plays in the NHL during the 2013-14 season. Despite their success on the man advantage, the Flyers surrendered eleven power play goals, the third-highest in the league. The first part of this series can be found here.
January 8, 2014 – Flyers vs. Canadiens
The Flyers were up 3-0 with less than five minutes to go in the second period when Steve Downie turned the puck over in the neutral zone. This is a mistake that cannot happen on the power play, especially with less than five minutes left in a period.
A late goal can shift the momentum of the game. The Flyers know this all too well, both on the giving and receiving end.
Sean Couturier played his man well. He eliminated space and time with the puck and forced his man to make a pass.
Careless turnovers like this cannot happen on the power play. The turnover did not end up costing the Flyers the game, but the second unit has to be more careful with the puck.
January 18, 2014 – Flyers vs. New York Islanders
Frans Nielsen, once again, found himself in the middle of a shorthanded goal against the Flyers. Midway through the second period, the Islanders were up 1-0.
This goal was a case of getting outworked by the opposition. Jakub Voracek – 6-foot-2, 214 lbs – should not get muscled off the puck by Neilsen, who is 6-foot-1 and weighs 180 lbs. Neilsen wanted the puck more than Voracek and it cost the Flyers another shorthanded goal.
Scott Hartnell blew his coverage on this play. Streit and Voracek had Neilsen covered. Hartnell got caught puck watching for a second and let Cal Clutterbuck slip by to not only get a shot on goal but to get a second chop at the rebound.
Hartnell is not the only man at fault here. He did blow his coverage, but Voracek was outworked by Neilsen. The shorthanded goal was a combination of poor backchecking and turning the puck over. As the next few goals show, the Flyers did begin to show improvement with the puck.
January 30, 2014 – Flyers @ Anaheim Ducks
Sometimes you just have to tip your hat to the opposition for a great play.
The Flyers were still in this game when Daniel Winnik scored with seven minutes left in regulation to give the Ducks a two-goal lead.
Kimmo Timonen has made this pass in his sleep, but Saku Koivu made a great read on the play. Timonen could have fired a shot on net or given a quick pass to Claude Giroux, but he tried to catch the Ducks off guard.
What disappoints me the most is the poor backchecking from Giroux and Voracek. A better effort is expected from them against an opponent like the Ducks.