Briere reflects on 800th game in NHL
It has been a tough stretch of games.
For Philadelphia Flyers forward, Daniel Briere, the last 21 games of his career have been difficult to swallow. For a player known for his expert ability to put pucks past goaltenders, a 21-game scoring drought is a nightmare.
While he failed to end his dry spell in the Flyers dominating 5-0 win over the Florida Panthers, he did manage to reach a career milestone that far surpassed any goalless streak.
On Thursday night, Briere played in his 800th career NHL game.
When it was announced over the public address system, the fans at Wells Fargo Center rose to their feet and showered the 14-year vet with cheers.
“That too, that was pretty cool,” Briere said of the ovation. “I remember when I started my career I never thought I’d get to 10…the first 50 were tough, but hopefully there’s a lot more and that was really cool, what the fans did when they announced it.”
Of course, the perfect way to celebrate the event would have been to end his drought.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t in the cards.
“Yeah, I think I’m retiring from scoring goals,” Briere jokingly said after the game. “It’s just not happening anymore.”
However, Briere managed to put together a pretty impressive performance none-the-less.
Paired with Matt Read and Wayne Simmonds, Briere and his line mates were arguably the most aggressive pairing of the night.
Able to consistently transition out of the defensive zone effortlessly, the line also established extended pressure in the offensive zone that resulted in several chances.
The group finished with a combined total of four points; two of which were assists by Briere.
He also attempted three shots and had several chances around the net.
However, he still had no luck finding the back of the net.
“I’ve had chances,” Briere said. “The chances are there, I just can’t finish these days.”
Obviously, no one wants to go this long without succeeding at their job. Briere has now gone two months without scoring a goal. For some individuals keeping a positive attitude would be tough.
Not for Briere.
His view on the situation is that of a seasoned veteran who understands the ups-and-downs of the game.
“I’m not too worried about that, it’s going to turn around at some point,” he said. “Looking at the last four or five games, our line has created a lot of chances and that’s all you can worry about.”
His teammates also have confidence that he will manage to turn it around soon.
“Danny every year down the stretch, he kind of finds his game,” Claude Giroux said. “Tonight was his best game in a long time. We all know he is a good player and down the stretch he is always our best player so we are pretty excited to see him play."
Ultimately, Thursday night was not about droughts, struggles or expectations.
Regardless of how many tallies Briere has in the goal column (or lack there of), the night was a chance to appreciate an impressive resume that is continuing to be built upon.
Playing 800 career games in the NHL is a huge accomplishment.
While he may not have been able to score a goal to celebrate it properly, his strong showing and positive attitude is hopefully a sign of good things to come.
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