3-3-14: After being destroyed in a 7-3 loss to the Sharks to start their post-Olympic schedule, the Flyers ripped off two big wins against the Rangers and Capitals this past weekend. Philadelphia is not far off from solidifying a playoff spot. GM Paul Holmgren will be active at the deadline seeking another veteran defenseman to sure up the Flyers thin blue line. A player like Buffalo’s Christian Ehroff or Islanders defenseman Andrew MacDonald could be options.
2-10-14: The Flyers closed out strong, winning four in a row before the break including wins over LA, San Jose, and Colorado. Captain Claude Giroux has six goals and seven assists in his past nine games and should be heading to Sochi to play for Team Canada. Giroux has been one of the best players in the league since December and for Canada to overlook him could prove costly. While he’s a natural center, Giroux can switch over and play the wing.
2-3-14: Last week, the Flyers took their first tentative steps away from an ugly run that had seen them win just two of nine games. The Flyers won two out of three this past week as Steve Mason recorded shutouts against Detroit and Los Angeles. The wins marked the first time since January 8 that Mason had allowed fewer than three goals in a start. The Flyers are right in the thick of things for a playoff spot in the East.
1-27-14: The Flyers have dropped four straight games, with the past three in regulation. They are 2-5-2 in their past nine games. This slump has knocked Philadelphia from a playoff spot, but their solid play over the previous six weeks has them right in the hunt for a wild-card spot. They'll need to improve quickly in order to avoid missing the postseason. Since signing a three-year contract extension last Saturday, Steve Mason has stopped only 64 of 75 shots in three games. He has been pulled from two of those games. Not good.
1-20-14: The Flyers have been one of the NHL's hottest teams for a little while now. This past week the team won two out of three games they played and fell in the shootout in its lone defeat to Nashville. There is no margin for error in the East right now. Philadelphia's 55 points give them a narrow leg up on most of the competition. Philadelphia signed Steve Mason to a three-year contract extension on Saturday, and the goalie responded by allowing four goals on 24 shots against the New York Islanders and getting pulled in the process.
1-13-14: The Flyers followed a 7-1-0 stretch with two losses by a combined 10-3 score. They've been hot of late, but with division opponents beginning to play well, it can't be an extended slump. Philadelphia is in the mix for a playoff spot after a dreadful start to the season and has a big opportunity to make some noise with their next four games coming against teams out of a playoff position. Steve Mason's save percentage in four January starts is .887. Since December, it's .895.
1-7-14: The Flyers haven't lost back-to-back games since early December and have won five of their last six and are 8-2-1 in that stretch. Philadelphia's fantastic run has pushed them up the Eastern Conference standings, and if the playoffs started today they would have home-ice advantage, sitting behind only Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division. No player has taken minor penalties more frequently than Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo. Who would have thought the Flyers would be in a playoff spot two months ago?
12-30-13: For once, the Flyers have been red-hot of late, going 5-1-1 in their past seven games.
They are beginning to make a push in the Metropolitan Division. The third playoff spot in the Metro has been up for grabs all season, but Philadelphia could be the ones to secure it if they continue playing like they have recently. Claude Giroux had zero goals and seven assists in his first 15 games of the season. In his past seven games, Giroux has five goals and nine assists.
12-23-13: The Flyers have gone 3-1-1 in their last five games. The only negative is that both losses came against division opponents. Philadelphia is in striking distance for a playoff spot in the worst division in hockey. Something to keep an eye on is the recent poor play of Steve Mason. He was Philadelphia's most valuable player early in the season when everything was going wrong. The team's been winning despite his play lately. In a 4-1-2 December he has a lousy .890 save percentage.
12-16-13: The Flyers have lost five out of their last seven games and suffered their most gut-wrenching loss of the season this past Sunday. Leading the Washington Capitals 4-1, the Flyers allowed three goals over the final 9:20 of play and let the game go to overtime. The Capitals would go on to win the game in a shootout. Good thing for the Flyers is they are in the Metropolitan Division so they’re never out of the playoff hunt.
12-9-13: The Flyers had won just two of four games coming into their slate of games last week. The Flyers were able to come away with only one win last week, a 6-3 rout of the Detroit Red Wings. They were shutout by the Minnesota Wild and were thoroughly outplayed by Tyler Seguin and the Dallas Stars 5-1. The placement of Vincent Lecavalier on IR with a back injury for three-to-four weeks will hurt the Philadelphia significantly.
12-2-13: The Flyers went 2-2-0 this past week, but had a serious chance to make up some ground. With game against Winnipeg, Florida, a Stamkos-less Tampa Bay and Nashville, the Flyers should have gone perfect. Since scoring his first goal of the season (against Edmonton), Claude Giroux has posted 11 points in 11 games played to go along with a plus-seven rating. One month ago it would have been crazy to call Philadelphia a playoff team. Now, the Flyers are in position to fight for a playoff spot.
11-25-13: The Flyers reached the .500 mark for the first time this season with their 5-2 victory over the New York Islanders last Saturday. The Flyers are 7-1-2 over their last 10 games and finally seem to have found their stride. Steve Mason continues to impress. His .933 save percentage and 2.11 GAA are excellent. Steve Downie has fit in well on the Flyers third line with Matt Read and Sean Couturier. In six games as a Flyer, Downie has yet to record a goal but does have six assists.
11-18-13: The Flyers had one of their better weeks in quite some time. Philadelphia won two out of three games last week including a 5-0 rout of the Ottawa Senators. The Flyers also has an impressive road win over Pittsburgh. The Flyers are now 4-1-2 in their last seven games. Steve Mason stopped 60 of 62 shots he saw last week and continues to be the Flyers best player. His .931 saver percentage is a career best so far.
11-12-13: In what is probably a lost season for the Flyers, Steve Mason continues to be the Flyers best player. The Flyers picked up a point in an overtime loss to the Hurricanes and split two games at home to the Devils and Oilers. One good thing is Claude Giroux finally scored his first goal of the season last Saturday versus Edmonton. The Flyers are always aggressive when it comes to making their team better. I would not be shocked to see the Flyers make a big time splash to turn this lowly season around.
11-5-13: It’s been an up-and-down week for the Philadelphia Flyers. They lost a one-goal game to the Ducks last Tuesday night and beat New Jersey 1-0 on Saturday. However, they got mauled 7-0 by the Capitals where goalie Ray Emery assaulted Braden Holtby in a line brawl. This team and franchise is a flat out embarrassment to the NHL. The Flyers are tied with the Buffalo Sabres for league lead in major penalties with 14. Steve Downie and Vincent Lecavalier are injured for the Flyers.
10-29-13: Hey the Flyers went undefeated this week. They beat the New York Rangers 2-1 at home in a strong performance by goaltender Steve Mason. The traveled to Long Island and scored a season-high five goals against the Islanders. Vincent Lecavalier scored his first hat trick as a member of the Flyers. He has six points in his last seven games and is now averaging a notch under one point per game. Lecavalier has been a bright spot for a rather dismal Flyers team.
10-21-13: The Flyers were morons for firing coach Peter Laviolette three games into the season. They have won one game since his departure and look worse than they did before. Injuries to Vincent Lecavalier and Scott Hartnell do not help, but prior to that they Flyers looked inept. They’ve scored 11 goals. Star forward Claude Giroux has no confidence at all and probably lost a spot on Canada’s Olympic roster. They have zero cap space and a stubborn owner and general manager who are both delusional. They will battle with the Sabres all year for the title of the NHL’s worst team.
10-14-13: The Flyers have nobody to blame but themselves for their awful start. They fired head coach Peter Laviolette three games into the season and replaced him with assistant head coach Craig Berube. The Flyers beat the Florida Panthers 2-1 in Berube’s coaching debut. Since then, they dropped games to the Phoenix Coyotes and Detroit Red Wings and looked listless in doing so. The offense has only produced eight goals in six games and star forward Claude Giroux has one assist in six games. It’s shaping up to be a long year in the City of Brotherly Love.
10-7-13: Ugly. That’s the only word to describe the situation in Philadelphia right now. They have registered only three goals, there is no consistency to their game, and that’s why they fired Peter Laviolette and replaced him with Craig Berube. There are many questions marks ahead for the Flyers and right now this team maybe destined for a lottery pick.
8-22-13: The additions of Vincent Lecavalier and Mark Streit will help an already talented roster in Philadelphia. However, the goaltending situation will always be the big question mark in the City of Brotherly Love. The Flyers bought out much maligned goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov in the offseason and signed Ray Emery to a one-year deal. Emery and Steve Mason are expected to split time in the pipes. Sidney Crosby and Penguins visit Philadelphia on Oct. 17. Danny Briere returns to Philadelphia on Dec. 12 as a member of the Canadiens. The L.A. Kings with former Flyers Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, Justin Williams and Dan Carcillo, visit Philly on Mar. 24.
7-20-13: The Flyers named Ron Hextall assistant GM and director of hockey operations.
Flyers 2013 NHL Draft Summary:
Pick #11: Samuel Morin, D
Pick #41: Robert Hagg, D
Pick #72: Tyrell Goulbourne, LW
Pick #132: Terrance Amorosa, D
Pick #162: Merrick Madsen, G
Pick #192: David Drake, D