Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Flyers: Looking for something 'special'

The Flyers may be the best five-on-five team in the NHL. But if they are on the power-play or short-handed, they are suffering.

In other words, the special teams have been terrible. Sounds like the Eagles, huh?

Inquirer beat reporter Tim Panaccio says in today's story, on the 3-2 loss to Toronto, that the Flyers have only one goal in 19 power-play chances. On the penalty kill, they have given up five goals in 19 chances.

And that is why they are 1-2 after the first three games.

"We've given up five power-play goals in three games, which is far too many," Flyer coach Ken Hitchcock said. "I really feel that killing a penalty is a sense of desperation. And it's the group that has the biggest sense of desperation that wins the game. It's the game within the game, and we're losing it."

That's what Hitch had to say. What about you?

A quick skate through the Flyers Forum on Philly.com came up with these:

From radoran:
We fans of the Philadelphia Flyers do not have a hockey "team" yet, we have a group of highly talented players who have played a grand total of three games together.

The Flyers have replaced four of their top five scorers and the fifth is playing most shifts out of position.

In losing some of their top scorers, they have also lost important parts of the "leadership group" which has steered this franchise for the past three years.

This is a new Flyers team. This is a new group of players who need time to develop which each other and play. They have new leaders. But I bet Hitch "knows where this locker room is." They all need each other. They will develop - together.

Esche is a goalie who benefitted from a system developed by one of the top coaching minds of the past decade, in its second year of development with roughly the same set of players. Esche hasn't played in a year. He needs time - as do we all - to adapt to a "new NHL". The players need time to develop Hitch's system. In some ways, Hitch is redeveloping his system for the "new NHL".

Unfortunately the Flyers' preseason will really be the first five games of the regular season. From where I sit, they open their season again in Toronto on October 22nd.

I do not mean to say that they will wipe the floor with the Leafs on that date. I mean to say we need to judge "progress" against the standard set tonight.

I don't expect miracles. We don't need miracles in October.

What the Flyers need is to become a team. And if that happens by February, this squad coming out of the Olympics could be exactly what we, as fans, expected it to be in an NHL2006 world.

Hockey is the ultimate team sport - individuals don't win games. Look at the Penguins.

But this Flyers team has the potential be one of the "ultimate" teams. It will not happen overnight. It never does.

But it can.


From Slade1955:
Same garbage year after year with the Flyers. No powerplay. Can't hit the broadside of a barn with the puck. Flyers shoot puck its goes right,it goes left it goes over the net,it goes into the stands,etc. Same plays different characters. Esche stinks!!! 9 goals in two games. Try playing like the Senators are Flyers and maybe you'll learn something!!!!!!!!!!!!


Flyern06:
Typical Flyers loss again. The flyers out play, out shoot, and out chance the opposition and they lose. I had this conversation with my brother and we both agreed that we make other teams goalies look like allstars all the time. and every time the other team has a good look at the goal i cringe because i think they're going to score. I hope Hatcher makes a difference when he comes back and can't wait until Sami is back. We have lots of youth and energy, but lack some experience with these youngsters. I think Nittymaki will be #1 soon.

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