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Jets vs Flyers - A righthanded defenseman

Guest Digityman

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The Flyers finally have their allusive righthanded defensemen.

Just in the first period you can see a difference with shots from the point.

To bad the Flyers need 4 to win games lately.

From TP

WINNIPEG, Canada -- They’ve played against each other and with each other.

Jaromir Jagr would prefer to remember the times he spent on the ice with defenseman Pavel Kubina when they were teammates for the Czech Republic.

Three times – 2002, 2006 and 2010 – the two of them played together in the Olympics and won the gold medal. Now they’re together as Flyers for the first time, trying to win a Stanley Cup.

The score on Cups? Jagr 2, Kubina 1.

“He’s right-handed and that’s the big key,” said Jagr, who won his Cups in Pittsburgh. “He’s a big guy (6-4, 258). I think he played dirty. At least, against me. Like in a legal way but effective. Like slash you in front of the net, he was on edge.”

Having Kubina, who won his Cup in Tampa Bay, work as a right-hand shot on the power play from the point, is something of immense value the Flyers have not had since Eric Desjardins.

“It’s nice to have that option of putting a right-hand guy on the point with a lefty,” said assistant coach Joey Mullen, who handles the power play.

“They can switch and you have one-timers going. We haven’t had that weapon since I’ve been here. We’re excited about it because Pavel has a heavy shot, too. That’s good for us. We’ll work him in and see how it goes.”

Tuesday night in Winnipeg, Kubina will get his first chance to play on a Flyer power play against the Jets who are trying to go 4-0 this season against the Flyers.

(He was not available at the morning skate).

“It could change us a lot,” Jagr said of having Kubina at the point. “When you have a one-timer from the right side, people [opponents] have to respect it that much. If you have a left-handed shot, the defense doesn’t give a [damn]. They’re not gonna take him away.

“Why? Before you shoot a slap shot, he shoots a wrist shot and he’s not going to score. Let’s say you play from the right side with a one-timer and he’s right-handed, [defense] has to cheat on him a little more. Because the shot is so quick and you have more room to play.”

Jagr says that Kubina has a bit of Chris Pronger edginess in him.

“You always need it, especially, with the new NHL,” he said. “I remember coming to the net and I was always hurt. With the new rules, it’s changed a little bit. They call all the slashing, the hooking, the little crashes around the net. Before, they kill you in front of the net. He played that style before.”

Now coach Peter Laviolette admits he has not had a lot of time to immerse either Kubina or Nicklas Grossman, the other defenseman acquired last week from Dallas, in his full systems approach.

That’s to take a few games for both men.

“There’s always a little bit of a learning curve,” Laviolette said. “Get used to what it is that we do compared to what they’re used to doing. There’s just a difference.

“In saying that, I thought Nicklas jumped in [against Pittsburgh] and his game was pretty good. He did what was expected of him. He was a plus player, he had eight hits, he blocked three shots. That’s what we can expect from him.”

Tonight the Flyers get to see what they can expect from Kubina.

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