Philadelphia Flyers Need to Fix Their Problems


It seems like every time the Philadelphia Flyers take a break, their games back always seem to suffer.

It’s not a new feeling for the Philadelphia Flyers. When they have four, five or six games off, it seems like they can’t get back to the hockey that saw them winning in the first place. Prior to their road trip, the team was 8-2-2. They had climbed to being within three points of a playoff spot, a great place to be going into their break. Yet it would be the last winning streak they would have in 2015. Their trip to the West Coast was a disaster. They dropped all three games in California and the losses put the team back seven points in the playoff race.

It wasn’t just the slow starts in each game that killed the Flyers. They struggled at even-strength and special teams was just a disaster. There were turnovers after turnovers in the game and it didn’t helped that in all three games, the team was struggling to find out why they couldn’t remake their pre-holiday magic. It certainly is no position to be in starting 2016 and there are worries that it will just continue. Yet there is hope as long as the Flyers can identify the problem and fix what is wrong.

One of the biggest issues that was seen during their West Coast road trip was the Flyers ability to work the penalty kill. It’s glaring like a giant red light and needs to be addressed. The Flyers’ penalty kill units were abysmal and when they were shorthanded on the ice, they allowed six goals. According to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia, the Flyers game against the Anaheim Ducks saw the team go 2 for 3 and have six shots on goalie Steve Mason. Those numbers don’t get any better against the San Jose Sharks, who scored three power play goals on the struggling team. The Flyers weren’t struggling towards the end of November and even in December. Yet something seemed to have fallen off the rails with the Flyers and the team needs to make some adjustment to their lines in order to make their penalty kills more efficient.

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  • The Flyers are also dealing with slow starts to their games. They haven’t been able all season to get started right off the bat in the first period. They’re dealing with finding a rhythm and getting down ice. Their opponents have struck first in the first 20 minutes of their last five games. Overall, they’ve gone 34-15 in terms of their opponents scoring first in the first period. They’ve only had six wins when the other team scores first and that is a disappointing number. The team isn’t being aggressive enough but just upping the aggressive factor alone isn’t going to solve the problem. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Flyers defensemen Michael Del Zotto said “It’s something we started to address before the break, and I thought we started to do a little better job.”

    The bright side of the Flyers’ issues is that the team isn’t going to make excuses for their performances. It was the first time since 2003-2004 that the Flyers had been swept out west. The Flyers want to boost their game against the Montreal Canadiens, who dominated the Boston Bruins in the Winter Classic. They’ll need to clean up their penalty kill units to keep the Canadiens at bay. Scoring first would be the biggest thing for the Flyers to work on before their game on Tuesday night. The team seems to have lost their momentum and their drive to excel on the ice. The Flyers need to dial-in their hard work and make sure that they bring their playoff mindset. Otherwise, it could the beginning of a long rest of the season for fans and coaches in Philadelphia.

    Next: New Year, Old Problems for Philadelphia Flyers