Flyers Take 1-0 Series Lead

The Flyers took game 1 against the Devils in a very nerve racking game, as the Flyers basically sat back in the 3rd period and trying to hold on a 2-0 lead. They gave up a late goal to make the score 2-1, but held on to take a 2-1 series lead in this first round series.

Brian Boucher was the player of the game for the Flyers, as he made just about every save that came his way, including a few really nice ones. The only goal the Devils scored came off a deflection that he had no chance on. The Devils controlled the play in the first period and Boucher kept it at 0-0 after that period, and the Devils controlled the 3rd period, but Boucher was up to the task. This was Boucher's first playoff win since 2000, also against the Devils.

The Flyers got on the board halfway through the 2nd period on the power play, as the puck was out in front of Brodeur, and Chris Pronger muscled the puck into the net. With just over 3 minutes left in the 2nd period, Mike Richards unleashed a laser that found the upper corner and beat Brodeur on a slap shot. The Flyers took the 2-0 lead into the 3rd period, and then really just sat back and basically wanted to clock to tick down before the Devils could catch up. They came close, but they didn't.

Even though the Flyers won, they were outplayed. They should treat Game 2 as if they were outplayed in Game 1, and show some more energy and a sense of urgency. The Flyers only ended up with 14 shots on the night. The Flyers never really carried the puck into the zone, they were always getting to the red line and dumping it in. And when they did dump the puck in, they were not able to get the forecheck going and start cycling to get some chances. The Flyers did do very well on the penalty kill, as they had to kill off 6 minutes of power play time for the Devils in the 3rd period alone, including a double minor.

Great start to the series, but the Flyers should not be content with this victory. They need to play better in Game 2 and the rest of this series if they want to advance to Round 2, because it is only a matter of time before the Devils players like Parise, and Kovalchuk get going. The Flyers can't count on Boucher carrying them many more games.


Summer of George said...

Boucher has to "stand on his head" just about every freakin' game for this group of underachievers to have any chance in hell. This might be one of the most puzzling teams in Philly sports history. They obviously don't have the strongest goaltending in the league (no surprise there -- when's the last time the Flyboys had a legitimate top tender between the pipes?). But the rest of the squad should be performing way better than they have. Struggling to put pucks in the net 3 out of 4 games week after week this entire season just doesn't make sense with the roster they have. There's something screwy about the chemistry of this team, but not sure anyone can put his/her finger on it. Speed is always an issue for this franchise, and they certainly lack a Crosby-level superstar, but barely crawling into the playoffs by virtue of an OT shoot-out seems to be way below this team's capabilities....or is it? Based on what they've shown this season, we're more likely to see these guys on the first tee next week than on the ice.

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