What we learned from the Flyers series split with the Penguins
It’s another series in the books, folks, and the Flyers‘ last encounters with the Penguins for the season are behind us. It was certainly an odd series, with the Flyers coming out and absolutely dominating in a pretty odd and chaotic game on Monday, scoring a 7-2 victory. and then with what looked like a pretty nice show last night, where they kept things close for a great part, until they didn’t, and we looked up and suddenly the final score was of 7-3. So, how are you.
All statistics via Natural Stat Trick.
Three note numbers
We’re going to dive into some of the underlying numbers in this series first, and hey, could you take a look at that! They are good!
The Flyers dominated possession quite well in those two games, scoring 55.13 CF% and 58.31 xGF%. The Penguins still had their legs under them (manners in last night’s game) and gave the Flyers a hard time for a few stretches, but overall they were able to regroup well and, with a few flurries of attack at the right time, stay in the mix. Things really seemed to click for them, and the results were coming their own way (although that was no longer the case on Monday).
Even last night, the Flyers got the better of those two shares (51.17 CF% and 55.75 xGF%), but they didn’t have the same luck or the same ability to capitalize on their chances this time around- this. They were close, but not quite there. An optimist might look at this and say “well, it’s refreshing not to see them get buried by gunfire, so there is that, anyway,” but a pessimist might point out that you have to. find a way to change this dominance of possession. into something tangible like dots on the board if you want to have a more productive season. Both are true. He’s a cop. But we’ll leave it there.
1 power play goal
As has been the case for the season so far, the Flyers have gotten a bit of production thanks to their power play in this series. Not a lot. But a few. And as has been the case for much of the season, it was more of a party or famine for the Flyers on man’s advantage.
They scored the only goal on Monday, dealing with Shayne Gostisbehere, and that did their share of production, and they had a few flashes with strong passing plays that made them look threatening, even if they weren’t. not able to do anything. of them.
Now, okay, they didn’t have a lot of power play time to work on (just 7:23 on those two games), but outside of goal they didn’t really have much else going for them. . . They only totaled four shots and three scoring chances, which as we’ve seen isn’t really a recipe for continued success. We enjoy the only goal, we really do, but it’s just a reminder that there is still work to be done, an agenda to be tackled in the offseason.
35 stops for Alex Lyon
Lyon haven’t had much playing time this season, but they’ve been given the scheduled start for Monday’s game, and has the man already made a game. While the Penguins didn’t have the same type of offensive outpouring as the Flyers, they still had more than their fair share of chances, and Lyon’s workload was not insignificant. In total, he faced 37 shots and nine high danger shots, and saved all but two. He was pretty stable throughout the game and made a handful of pretty noticeable saves just like this one.
In some ways, that seems a bit bittersweet, if we’re going to get into the big picture a bit early here. The race has been difficult for Lyon, as he has found himself a strange man in many ways since Ron Hextall was fired, and while consistency has been an issue in his limited performance, he obviously has talent, and we can’t help but do it. I wonder what could have happened if the Flyers had prioritized giving him a little more time and turning him into a regular NHL goalie. But maybe that’s a conversation for another day.
Two cowardly observations
A little luck finally comes
Something we’ve mentioned quite often this season is how damn it seems, for a number of reasons, but in particular for the fact that it feels like anything that could go wrong is going to go wrong. bad, and it goes bad in absolutely the most spectacular fashion. But because things need to at least make a move towards an equalizer, we’ve seen the Flyers get some rebounds in the last two games, whether it’s in the fact that two of their goals last night came off. Penguins (Jeff Carter, hello), and there were saves Monday that the goalie had no business to do, pucks that crept in and were saved at the last second, posts hit on nets wide open, all that jazz.
It’s too little too late, at this point we would like to tell the universe, but a little luck is always welcome. It would have been nice for the Flyers to get some of those rebounds earlier in the season, but hey, what can you do?
We have life
Probably the biggest asset of those two games was the fact that the Flyers looked energetic and engaged, finally. Now they certainly weren’t perfect, there were times when they looked a bit flat and struggled, but overall they had a lot of jumps, they made good chances, and they brought even good health (and sometimes more than a healthy) dose of physicality. The team, in short, seemed to have regained their care, and it was a drastic change from what we got last week or so, and it’s a change that couldn’t be more welcome.
And we’ve said it before, but it’s worth repeating: with the season over and the playoffs officially out of reach, it’s no exaggeration to say that many of these players are still playing to keep their jobs, so as not to be exchanged. in what should be an active offseason for the Flyers. And if you’re looking to send a message saying ‘hey we’re unverified we’re still here and we still care’ this is the kind of presentation they needed. It wasn’t perfect, but we don’t really need it right now. The Flyers have been drumming a big drum here for not quitting, and this time around they put their money where it was.
The big picture
We had a little fun this week, eh? Now the way last night’s game ended was certainly not fun, we can’t pretend it was, but there were times it felt like “well, the Flyers just made it interesting, now I’m invested again “. and then they made a dominant effort on Monday, it was really fun. And maybe it seems like a trivial thing to point out, but we don’t really think it is. Because a lot of this season has sucked, there’s really no other way to tell. The schedule has been relentless and things have gone wrong for much of this season, and it has been a bit difficult to do at times. And yes, the season is indeed over at this point. But seeing the Flyers beat the Penguins a bit never really gets old. It was fun and we all more than deserved it.