Devils visit Flyers to win nine straight games against Philly
As the Philadelphia Flyers continue to withdraw from the playoff race, so does their offense.
In their first 28 games, the Flyers averaged 3.3 goals per game. In the last 19, they have scored 2.1 goals per game.
This is quite a drop.
The Flyers (21-19-7, 49 points) will look to turn the tide in the final nine games of the season when they host the New Jersey Devils on Sunday.
“A lack of confidence,” said forward Scott Laughton, who has gone 23 scoreless games. “It seems when we have a game it bounces off our stick. We have to find out. It’s been a tough stretch, but we need to fix it. “
Laughton even attempted to change the momentum with a rare fight in a 4-1 loss to the New York Rangers on Friday. In the second period, Laughton mingled with Kevin Rooney, but the crash didn’t help the Flyers in the end.
“You have to try and change the momentum a little bit, but it didn’t work,” Laughton said.
The Flyers haven’t scored more than three goals in 13 straight games and 18 of the last 19.
“They’re probably fighting a little bit,” Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault said of the drought. “But (Friday) we had some great looks to come back into this game and we just couldn’t find the back of the net.”
Goalkeeper Carter Hart suffered a lower-body injury, so Brian Elliott and Alex Lyon went their separate ways in back-to-back games against the Rangers.
Vigneault hinted that Elliott would likely start against the Devils.
The Slippery Devils hope to avoid a 10th consecutive defeat.
Their ninth straight loss was a 4-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.
As a result, the Devils’ record fell to 14-27-6, good for 34 points. It wasn’t that long ago that they were at least competitive.
“We’re a team right now that need big saves on big mistakes,” said Devils head coach Lindy Ruff. “We didn’t get them and it was hard for us. At the same time, we need to reduce the margin on the mistakes we make. “
The first deficits were particularly troublesome. On Saturday they were down 2-0 in the first and never recovered.
“You can’t win a lot of games early on. But you can help set the tone, ”said Ruff. “We helped many other teams set the tone for the game.”
What needs to change?
“Pucks deep, handle the puck, 200-foot game. It’s that easy, ”said Ruff. “We get the puck, we put it behind them, we put it under the goal line, we put them under pressure. Then these are just details for me.
Goalkeeper Mackenzie Blackwood returned from an upper-body injury to record 33 saves against the Penguins. Blackwood, who had been out the previous two games, looked sharp for most of the game with a number of stellar saves.
The Devils need to produce more offense to relieve the goalie.
“Offensively, trying to use our speed and making good decisions when we hit the line,” Ruff said. “Get in there and fight for the first opportunity, but the most important thing is to get there and try to look for the second opportunity. It is really important that in all three areas we have a detailed effort. “
– Field-level media