Felix Sandstrom still hasn’t been able to notch his 2nd career win in the NHL and it can be understood for fans and the media to be calling for him to traded. A lot of the players in the Flyers locker room are still standing behind Sandstrom, but lets deep dive into some of the goals Sandstrom gave up this season and whether or not it was on him or the defense.
Flyers versus Kraken
The Flyers were running around the zone in this sequence. You have Laughton, Provorov, York, Allison and Hayes. In Torts system, when the puck goes into the corner, the winger is supposed to come down and effectively take the spot of the defensemen coming over to help while the center jumps into help with the scrum.
Provorov loses the puck battle and slowly cruises over while Laughton goes to help and Allison needlessly slides to the middle and screens Sandstrom for Schwartz to get a wide open snipe. The play broke down and honestly is more on Provorov.
At the moment Laughton slides down, he needs to slide back to his spot on the ice and be aware of where Schwartz was on the ice. Provorov ended up puck watching and let Schwartz walk in all alone and get a great shot on net. While Sandstrom would like to have it back, this is one that any goalie most likely wouldn’t be able to have.
Another defensive break down. DeAngelo made a great block to stop the original pass through. Allison, again, has no business being where he is on the ice and chaos ensued. The Flyers had Laughton and Allison puck watching while Schwartz was able to get to the slot wide open even after sending the puck in deep.
Seeler and Wenberg provided the screen again on Sandstrom and Schwartz had another easy goal. This is one if your Sandstrom that maybe you can anticipate where the shot was going and attempt to make a save, but a screen in front makes things extremely difficult.
This is the goal where your goalie needs to come and make a save. Turnovers happen and it can lead to breakaways like this but watching Sandstrom come to challenge Tolvanen and stop his shot. It just seems like a lot of times, Sandstrom is lagging behind by a second or two at all times.
These are goals he has given up in his young career that an NHL goalie who wants to stay in the NHL needs to make. And it’s especially one a backup who wants to prove his worth SHOULD make.
Turnovers happen and once again, Sandstrom could not come up with a big save. Two on ones are not easy, but Sandstrom absolutely took himself out of the play by coming across and laying down with the glove up. Sandstrom likes to play more in the butterfly and ends up leaving a lot of space for opposing teams to shoot and this was just egregious. Eberle just outwaited Sandstrom and let him make the first move.
Go watch any game prior to this and it is similar. The Flyers honestly don’t ever have a chance to win a game with Sandstrom in net and maybe Fletcher is catching on. Maybe you see all the goals as Sandstrom’s fault or maybe only one or two, but regardless, Sandstrom has been an issue and it is being addressed with the recall of Ersson back to this roster.
Ersson has earned the backup role and should be just that for the rest of this season. Maybe it isn’t all of Sandstrom’s fault, but a team who needs goalies might be interested in Sandstrom. If not, the move may have to be to just put him through the waiver wire and see what happens.