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I'm calling it right now.


Guest Samifan
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I wouldn't bet against it. The same thought crossed my mind. The announcers made a big deal about how he didn't tap Bob on his way out to replace him in goal and how he was just sitting on the bench looking totally out of it. My thought was he's lost in his head and it's going to take a while to find his way out. But by then, this series will be over. Let's hope Bob can step up.

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@OH1FlyersFan

Leighton would be the worst idea! Does anyone remember last year's goalie carousel? Throwing in Leighton would make that look sane.

Yes. And sadly Bryz is worse than Leighton. He has been most of the year. And he has been for the playoffs. He can't put together a single good (not great, good) game. He has to suck for at least a period. WTF did Snider see in this guy, or did he just look at his stats?

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Snider just told Homer to get the "top" free agent. We should have just traded with the nucks and got Schneider. Hell even Craig Anderson is playing out of his mind right now. But with our D, I am not sure any goalie would survive.

Edited by Samifan
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@Samifan

Our defence has been bad. But have you ever seen an NHL goaltender handle the puck worse, move slower, funnel goals in and just look completely lost in net? Especially one that is supposed to "steal games". He steals them alright, for the opposition.

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After the 1st goal I KNEW it was gonna be a long night (basic shot, easy to corale and not let a dribbler rebound go right in front of the net)

..... and by the 3rd goal, I was ready to pull him. Lavs was a few steps late w/ everything all night.... and the Flyers just looked like they didnt want to play

after the 1st.... I guess the expected the Pens to lay down after they grabbed the lead back?

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It's not like Fluery has been lights out either. My point being both teams are suffering from poor goal tending. Last night was a failure on all parts. Bryz was horrible but so was the rest of the team. They did not have the jump in their step that they had in the previous three games. I think they were riding high going into the game and completely overlooked the fact that they have to win one more. Heck even Lavvy didn't look as mad as he has earlier in the series. In fact they all looked complacent.

I do not see Leighton as an option. I'd rather Bob get a couple of starts (and some confidence) than throw Leighton out there. Now if Bryz has suffered an injury I am ok with Leighton being a backup, but I sure as heck don't want to see him start. Bob has had a decent record in Pittsburgh against this team, however if the rest of the team doesn't show up it doesn't matter who you put in net.

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It's not like Fluery has been lights out either. My point being both teams are suffering from poor goal tending. Last night was a failure on all parts. Bryz was horrible but so was the rest of the team. They did not have the jump in their step that they had in the previous three games. I think they were riding high going into the game and completely overlooked the fact that they have to win one more. Heck even Lavvy didn't look as mad as he has earlier in the series. In fact they all looked complacent.

I do not see Leighton as an option. I'd rather Bob get a couple of starts (and some confidence) than throw Leighton out there. Now if Bryz has suffered an injury I am ok with Leighton being a backup, but I sure as heck don't want to see him start. Bob has had a decent record in Pittsburgh against this team, however if the rest of the team doesn't show up it doesn't matter who you put in net.

both goalie have been bad. I was hoping that the Flyers could get this team out of the way because if either team was going to tighten up their D first I knew it would be Pitts. What's funny is Bryz has made some phenomenal saves in this series, but as @flyercanuck said, he has yet to put together one good game. Fortunately in the games he was making those fantastic saves he was also letting in turds as well that the Flyers potent offense was making up for. Kinda the song from the regular season. When the Flyers score, they're tough to beat, but not because of D or goal tending. They've been asked to outscore the opponent in high scoring games all year.

I agree with you too about Bob. As bad as he looked last night, I'd still rather start him over Leighton. Leighton hasn't seen NHL action in a year. Despite his great AHL numbers, there's no way he comes in and is the savior. I think Bob, with a team committed to defense, can easily handle this team. As you said, it will require the "TEAM"

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Lavs was a few steps late w/ everything all night

I thought so too. I was looking for a timeout much earlier to settle things down. Like after we blew the second powerplay and Malkin came right out to score. The cracks were already showing. It's interesting we all saw the same thing - that after that first goal we knew it was going to be a bad night. When you've been watching a team as long as we have, you can definitely pick up on the nuances - when things are going to be good and when they are not!

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Bryzgalov looked like Kawliga the wooden indian made famous by Hank Williams. I bet more than half of us could see he was not right from the get go. They won in spite of him the first three games not because of him. You stop the puck it lands at your feet you don't look at it you pounce on it.

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@Samifan

Our defence has been bad. But have you ever seen an NHL goaltender handle the puck worse, move slower, funnel goals in and just look completely lost in net? Especially one that is supposed to "steal games". He steals them alright, for the opposition.

Both the defense and goaltending deserve to be crucified. I don't recall the Flyers defense being that bad in a long time. And it's not even specific individuals you can pick apart. The whole team D has been substandard all year long, and I am holding the coach responsible for that. I know I am probably in the minority, but I simply don't subscribe into this coach's system.

The Pens have been atroceous in the first 3 games and that's the only reason we are leading in this series while allowing an average of 4.75 goals per game. That's unheard of. You can never EVER win a playoff series with such a dismal GAA.

Bryzgalov deserves a special mentioning. I can't even be mad at him anymore.

Edited by Mad Dog
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The whole team D has been substandard all year long, and I am holding the coach responsible for that. I know I am probably in the minority, but I simply don't subscribe into this coach's system.

Somewhat reluctantly, I agree. There are a lot of things about Lavi that I like, but I am just not a fan of his offense-heavy style of play. If he wins a Cup all will be forgiven, but I just don't enjoy constantly being nervous any time the puck gets in the Flyers end.

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@JackStraw

To be fair, I tend to suspect that he chose this go-go style based on personnel available to him. In Carolina he had right players who could play stiffling defense. Brind'Amour was a defensive anchor, and possibly the best defensive forward in the entire playoffs of 2005. Forwards like Matt Cullen, Andrew Ladd, Eric Cole, and Craig Adams also knoew how to cross check and bottle up neutral zone. Plus, their entire defense featured players who were simply excellent stay-home d-men, like Commodore, Niklas Wallin, Bret Hedican, and Aaron Ward. And Cam Ward was just playing out of his mind.

The Flyers don't have that personnel, maybe with the exception of Talbot, but he can't do things Brind'Amour could. And Couturier, as brilliant as he was so far, is a teenager. I have a feeling that from now forward, Malkin will start abusing Couturier... I hope I am wrong, of course.

So in a sense, I think Laviolette *chose* this offense-first style based on the roster. The loss of Pronger was supposed to be huge, and it's proving to be so. After that, our defense is poor garbage. I am sorry to say this, but they are terrible. I have tons of respect for Timonen, but he is aging - that's just the law of nature... He is trying, but he doesn't have much left in the tank. And after that, we have nothing. Carle, Lilja, Kubina... I mean... And our forwards are not much different. This is where teh loss of Mike Richards is felt. Giroux tries, but we both know his game is more about offense than defense. And we no longer have the likes of Joel Otto, Shjon Podein, Laparierre, Sami Kapanen, Gagne, Brind'Amour..... guys who could just lock up defensively and neutralize opposing players.

I see the way Ryan Callahan in NY is playing, and this is as perfect of the defensive game as one can play. He basically perfected it. Tortorella built his system around him, I am sure of that.

Edited by Mad Dog
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Posted · Hidden by Mad Dog, April 19, 2012 - No reason given
Hidden by Mad Dog, April 19, 2012 - No reason given

@JackStraw

To be fair, I tend to suspect that he chose this go-go style based on personnel available to him. In Carolina he had right players who could play stiffling defense. Brind'Amour was a defensive anchor, and likely the best defensive forward in the entire playoffs of 2005. Forwards like Matt Cullen, Andrew Ladd, Eric Cole, and Craig Adams also knoew how to cross check and bottle up neutral zone. Plus, their entire defense featured players who were simply excellent stay-home d-men, like Commodore, Niklas Wallin, Bret Hedican, and Aaron Ward. And Cam Ward was just playing out of his mind.

The Flyers don't have that personnel, maybe with the exception of Talbot, but he can't do things Brind'Amour could. And Couturier, as brilliant as he was so far, is a teenager. I have a feeling that from now forward, Malkin will start abusing Couturier... I hope I am wrong, of course.

So in a sense, I think Laviolette *chose* this offense-first style based on the roster. The loss of Pronger was supposed to be huge, and it's proving to be so. After that, our defense is poor garbage. I am sorry to say this, but they are terrible. I have tons of respect for Timonen, but he is aging - that's just the law of nature... He is trying, but he doesn't have much left in the tank. And after that, we have nothing. Carle, Lilja, Kubina... I mean... And our forwards are not much different. This is where teh loss of Mike Richards is felt. Giroux tries, but we both know his game is more about offense than defense. And we no longer have the likes of Joel Otto, Shjon Podein, Laparierre, Sami Kapanen, Gagne, Brind'Amour..... guys who could just lock up defensively and neutralize opposing players.

I see the way Ryan Callahan in NY is playing, and this is as perfect of the defensive game as one can play. He basically perfected it. Tortorella built his system around him, I am sure of that.

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@Mad Dog - Well, I understand that argument and you may be at least partially correct. But I don't think you need to have a group of shut-down forwards and d-men to play solid positional defense. When there are so many breakdowns in coverage in the defensive zone, when there are constantly opposing forwards left alone within 15 ft of your own goal, I have to think that some defensive fundamentals are just not being stressed.

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@JackStraw

I hear you, but then I don't know how else to explain it. Does he instruct his players to play better deffense, and they are just not listening? You and I are both seeing rudimentary, basic shortcomings that a playoff team simply cannot have. On just about every other goal the Pens have scored in this series, there was a guy (either a scorer himself or an assist guy) who is being left wide open with nobody even near him. I mean you can often miss a coverage, you can positionally fall out of play, but not to have anybody anywhere close to a player who is front of the net, time after time after time.......... how can that be?

And the most disconcerting thing is that it really looks like the Flyers are not even *trying* to cover that open guy. I cannot recall EVER such a blatant, glaring disregard for defensive assignments with this team, even going back to Wayne Cashman's or Bill Barber's coaching era, or John Steven's coaching, which doesn't say much.

I agree with you in a sense that players, even if they are not "defensive speacilaists", shoudl know better. But game after game - going back to te regualr season - we see players........ I don't even know what the right word is........almost choosing not wanting to play defense. I mean......... how can that be? I can't imagine this is coming from the head coach.

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@Mad Dog

Simple offensive things can help too, like maintaining possession in the offensive zone, smart passing, forcing the opposing goalie to cover, etc. The turnovers are highly to blame for the chances, but goalies are paid to keep them out. The team might not be doing them favors, but the responsibility falls primarily with the goaltenders. Especially with the stinkers floating past Bryz consistently all season - it is Bryz's fault.

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I have to think that some defensive fundamentals are just not being stressed.

Hold on here a minute folks. How quickly everyone forgets. We had an outstanding month - it was so long ago I understand why no one remembers...oh wait, it was March. LAST month guys! And we won a good number of games holding the opposition to 1, 2 goals. Detroit, the Devils, Wash, oh yeah and that other team from PA...the Penguins! Remember how we did it?

Grossmann came aboard. Coburn (who MadDog left out of his trashing session completely, dk why - maybe because Coburn is an excellent D-man) and Kimmo were rock-solid, MAB was in and out but played well generally, Carle stopped his amateur turnovers and above all BRYZGALOV decided he actually cared about playing for the Flyers. He saw some serious TEAM D help and got aboard too.

We got WAY off track in this series for a number of reasons, the most important being how bad the Pens played in G1-3. We reverted to all our old bad habits - TURNOVERS are #1 by far - but weak passing, sloppy passing, quick, low-percentage shots on Fleury instead of hammering the forecheck...etc.

It was one god-awful game but it isn't the End of All Things. Lavy has an uptempo, attack-style but it isn't devoid of defense. Come on. It's not "the system" that's to blame it's the players deciding they didn't need to play D. Add in a goaltender who doesn't like it when his team abandons him - apparently he takes it real personal and decides "okay then I won't try either" (immature d i c k h e a d that he is) and so you get 10-3.

If the Flyers regroup and play the way they did in March - and Bob or Bryzgalov do their part to keep the Pens under 3 goals we win G5. No doubt in my mind at all.

Edited by canoli
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@canoli

OK, we did OK in March... That's one month, when we managed to held an opposition under 3 goals per game.

But of all 16 teams who made the playoffs, only Ottawa and Chicago allowed more goals. And Ottawa is mainly due to their horrendou start to the season.

I am not imagining things. I think about 2 months ago we had a discussion and you and I actually agreed that the team D had a lot to be desired. I agree with Jack that you don't to have a team crammed full of Selke Trophy's nominees to be able to play a decent defense. And I still see the same issues that were plaguing the team during the regular season: blown coverages, inability to clear the zone, inability (or lack of desire) to take body, forwards not helping d-men, etc, etc......... If we don't want to think it's a system - fine. Than what is it? Just a collection of players who either can't or don't want to play defense? Or players not listening to his coach? Why did we finish teh regular season having allowed 232 goals? That's 2.8 goals per game. I know our #1 goalie is a jerk. But I tend to think there is more to it than just him.

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