Flyers fall to Sens 3-1

This article can be found published on Center Ice Hockey Magazine’s website.
Ilya_Bryzgalov

Ilya Bryzgalov had some words to say to the media following the loss. (Candice Monhollan)

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — Two breakaways led directly to two goals and it was enough to put the Philadelphia Flyers away as they lose 3-1 to the Ottawa Senators Thursday night.

Hopes of reaching the playoffs are becoming dimmer with every loss and the players know it.

“To get to the playoffs, you got to win games,” said captain Claude Giroux. “Right now, we’re not winning games.”

Goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov was solid in the loss, but what isn’t helping is the lack of offense the team is producing in front of him.

In the last three games, the team has only scored three goals, and none of them have come on the once hot power play.

“We’ve got to find a way to get more pucks to the net, more traffic and [be] a little bit more hungry than we are right now,” Giroux said. “Obviously, it’s not getting the job done, so we need to figure something out here.”

After putting together a four-game win streak that had them close to the last spot in the playoffs, the Flyers have now dropped three in a row and sit in 12th, seven points behind the eighth-place New York Rangers.

“It’s been a real up and down year, for sure,” said defenseman Luke Schenn. “Guys are probably squeezing the stick a little tight. Frustration is a big thing, but I know everyone is still working and competing and we’re going to do it right to the end.”

Not only has the season been up and down, but the game itself was the same way.

The Flyers were caught in the midst of a line change when Marc Methot sent a pass through the middle to Zack Smith, who broke in on a breakaway from the Flyers blue line and beat Bryzgalov 3:20 into the game.

“We looked like the team that didn’t want to hang onto the puck too much,” said forward Simon Gagne. “As soon as we had it on their table, we would give it away. It seemed that’s how they got the first goal.”

The Flyers were able to turn the tide when Gagne took a shot from the blue line on a penalty kill that Giroux tipped in from in front of goaltender Robin Lehner at 11:22 of the first to tie the game.

Coming back out for the second, the Flyers reverted back to their play at the beginning of the game and let the Senators take control.

In the third period, a bad stick penalty by the Flyers proved costly.

With six minutes left in regulation, Giroux took a double minor for high-sticking Mika Zibanejad in the face.

It took only 31 seconds into the first penalty for the Senators to strike.

Colin Greening slipped behind the entire Flyers penalty killing unit and was sprung on a breakaway and made them pay.

“There was a line change and a miss-coverage,” said head coach Peter Laviolette. “They had been bringing five guys back all night on their power play and breakouts and that last time, they brought four back and the one [Greening] stretched. From the change, we missed them.”

Daniel Alfredsson iced the game with an empty-net goal with 6.9 seconds remaining to make it 3-1 for the Senators.
Clearly agitated, Bryzgalov didn’t have much to say following the game.

“I’m part of the team, we play as a team and it’s frustrating for us,” Bryzgalov said. “We lose the game and we fall further from the playoffs.”

NOTES

After so much of the news was focused on Bryzgalov and his sleeping habits on Wednesday, he called out members of the media following the game.

“You know guys, to be honest, I don’t know where you get this information,” Bryzgalov said. “Be honest, did you read yourself what you wrote? That’s embarrassing. You have to prove your sources. That was never happening. You became not professional journalist. It’s embarrassing, seriously. You’ve got to do your job better. I’m only pointing at guys who were involved in this because it’s really embarrassing and you have to be better. Step up, guys. Prove your information. Find a reliable source.”

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Categories: Ice Hockey, NHL, Sports

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