Flyers look to avoid Turkey hangover against Habs
The last time the Philadelphia Flyers and Montreal Canadiens met, things didn’t play out the way the Flyers would have liked them to.
Montreal came into the game with a 1-5-2 record and had yet to win a game at home.
That changed following the Flyers visit to Bell Centre.
Philadelphia opened the scoring with a goal from Jaromir Jagr. The play began from the stick of Scott Hartnell who had recently joined Jagr on the top line with Claude Giroux.
To that point, the line had produced a combined total of 10 points in two games and included two-goal nights from both Jagr and Hartnell in the team’s previous game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
With the two players connecting once again, many believed that the Flyers were on there way to dominating the down on there luck Canadiens.
Nothing could have been further from the truth.
Montreal took advantage of an Andrej Meszaros interference penalty and tied the game at one with only three seconds remaining in the first period.
The goal was the first of five unanswered.
The Flyers followed up their disappointing performance in Montreal with an even more devastating loss to the Winnipeg Jets in Philadelphia.
After opening the season 4-0-1, the Flyers found themselves in the midst of a 0-4-1 slide.
But, as the old proverb says, it’s always darkest before dawn.
Or maybe that was said in Batman Begins, but regardless the Flyers ultimately turned around their rough patch by winning six of their next eight. The team even managed to record a point in all eight games.
As of late, things have gotten a little rocky.
The team allowed the Winnipeg Jets to slap them around again and followed that up with a discombobulated loss to the lowly Carolina Hurricanes.
Had it not been for a few lucky bounces against the Islanders on Wednesday, the Flyers could have been coming into this afternoon’s game in the midst of their first three-game losing streak of the season.
While it was encouraging to see the team dig themselves out of a deep hole, it was far more discouraging to see the way they got there in the first place.
Compounded with weak efforts against the Jets and Hurricanes, the Flyers are not playing the strongest of defensive hockey as of late.
While one could argue that Ilya Bryzgalov played poorly in his short stint on Wednesday, it’s undeniable that the Islanders had easy access to the slot and had several uncontested shot attempts.
The Canadiens are currently 6-4-1 in November. Their 5-1 win against the Flyers was the first of an eventual four-game winning streak that saw them outscore opponents 13-5 over that span.
If Montreal is afforded the same kind of opportunities the Islanders were, you can all but guarantee that the Canadiens will continue what they started at Bell Centre.