Better With Popcorn

Feeble Finish: Philadelphia falls apart in 6-4 loss to Pittsburgh

The game was lost in the third period.

Following another disappointing home loss in an afternoon game by the Philadelphia Flyers, it is a simple fact that the team lost the contest with their horrendous play in the third period.

With Sergei Bobrovsky in net relieving Ilya Bryzgalov, the Pittsburgh Penguins quickly jumped on the Flyers sloppy play, scoring the eventual game-winning goal 37 seconds into the final frame.

The onslaught didn’t stop there.

Just 92 seconds later, the visiting Penguins increased their lead to two and added another before all was said and done to painfully put the game out of reach.

"They scored kind of right away to make it four-three and the next shift to make it five-three and then you have nothing to lose," Jaromir Jagr said. "After that, we just didn't have anything."

Wayne Simmonds scored a meaningless goal with 19 seconds left and the final score was reached with the Penguins leaving Philadelphia with a 6-4 victory.

While the game was lost in the third, the Flyers troubles began long before that.

After allowing the Penguins to jump out to an early 1-0 lead in the first period, the Flyers managed to fight their way into the game on the back of two beautiful goals by Jagr.

Following a strong finish to the period, the team’s wheels began to sputter during a special teams ridden second.

With the Flyers already leading 2-1, they earned a power play opportunity when Pascal Dupuis was called for tripping. Instead of adding to their lead, a turnover by Claude Giroux in the offensive zone gave way to a Pittsburgh short-handed goal.

After the Penguins went down another man, the Flyers had plenty of time to try to regain their lead on the ensuing 5-on-3. Instead, it was Pittsburgh who scored again.

"Personally, I did some bad passes and, I mean, five on three should be automatic and in the net, so we know we have to be better," Giroux said. "It didn't help our case tonight."

Following the goal, Bryzgalov was pulled; two minutes later Eric Wellwood scored his first career NHL goal to tie the game at three going into the third.

From there, the game became a joke.

After a slow start, the team played well for a good chunk of time only to regress to something that resembled mites on ice more so than a professional game.

No matter how you spin the situation, the Flyers played a terrible game.

The nauseating circumstance that has been the Flyers goaltending this season once again reared its head. Bryzgalov let in bad goals and then Bobrovsky came in and let in even worse ones.

The skaters weren’t much better.

With all six of Pittsburgh’s goals coming off of Philadelphia turnovers, one would be hard pressed to put all of the blame onto the shoulders of the goaltenders.

“We're behind our two goalies and we have confidence in them,” Claude Giroux said. “Bad goals are going to happen, but they're two good goalies and we know we have to be better in front of them.”

However, don’t give the goaltenders too much slack either. They played horrifically and deserve to catch heat for Saturday’s game.

The result is the same as it has been for a few weeks now; the fans have no trust in the goaltenders, the team lacks any visible cohesiveness and the picture becomes bleaker as each game comes to pass.

“You’re coming off of a day where we needed to be better," Peter Laviolette said. "You’re asking the question now, so I think everybody is frustrated right now with the loss to Pittsburgh and I think that we can be better in a lot of different areas."

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