The Flyers woes continued again tonight in a 5-2 loss against the Washington Capitals. Philadelphia came out strong with a Scott Laughton goal three and a half minutes into the 1st period. After Washington tied the game at 1 to end the 1st period, Claude Giroux put the Flyers back on top 2-1 one minute into the 2nd period. It all went down hill after that.
Washington closed out the game with 4 consecutive goals including two power play goals from Jason Chimera in the 2nd period.
The Flyers have now lost 8 of its last 9 games, and fall to 7th place in the Metropolitan division. Conversely, Washington now takes sole possession of 2nd place in the same division after sharing 2nd place with Pittsburgh earlier in the night.
For a multitude of reasons, Philadelphia hasn’t begun the season in the positive way its fans and the team’s management had hoped for. The slow start has become a trend that better change soon, or else management may be forced to shake up the locker room with a major trade.
At this morning’s skate around before the Capitals game, Flyers general manager Ron Hextall spoke to the media about the team being more accountable for its poor performance as of late:
“Accountability is something that has to become a staple around here,” Hextall said. “Accountability is demanded of each other, it’s demanded of yourself. There are nights where it’s hard to go out there and play because you don’t feel good, you’ve been traveling, you’re tired. You know what, that’s too bad. You have to go out there and you have to play your [butt] off.”
The Flyers started the season with an encouraging 4-2-1 record. Since then, the team has struggled to find consistency. Philadelphia has lost all 9 games after allowing the first goal and have one power-play goal in the past 9 games.
A significant trade may be coming soon if the Flyers continue its poor play.
Flyers captain Claude Giroux, one of the few bright spots on the team, was asked what he thought about a potential roster change:
“You know what, I’m not going to be worrying about that stuff,” Giroux said. “I’m more worried about winning games and getting back on track here. I’m going to let [management] do their jobs and I’m going to worry about mine cause right now it’s got to be better.”
The night could have been a lot worse for Flyers fans. Flyers rival and Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin could have broken a major personal record at the Wells Fargo Center, and would have, if not for an offsides call that was challenged and overturned.
Ovechkin is one goal away from passing Hockey Hall of Famer Sergi Fedorov for most goals scored by a Russian born player in NHL history. Ovechkin entered the game tied with Fedorov with 483 goals in 772 games. It took Fedorov 1,248 games to score the same 483 goals. That’s why they call him “Alexander the Great.”
Ovechkin was asked if it was hard to see his goal get wiped away:
“Yeah, obviously,” Ovechkin said. “Great call by them, but there was nothing you can do. It sucks I guess.”
Ovechkin will almost certainly score his record breaking goal in the near future. The same certainly can not be said about the turn around of the disappointing Flyers.
When Philadelphia struggled last season and didn’t make the playoffs, the head coach was fired. Now with a new head coach in Dave Hakstol, a few significant players may soon be on the move to shake up a roster that has the talent to succeed, but, for whatever reason, isn’t.
The Flyers look to end its slump when they take on the equally disappointing Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night. The puck drops at 7pm.