Flyers-Sharks: Postgame Review
Last season, right around this time, the Flyers were just starting out on a 10-game winning streak that put the Flyers in a great position in the standings, which they ultimately let slip away.
This season is slipping quickly on the Flyers, and it's because of efforts like the one shown on Tuesday night against the San Jose Sharks, which sent the Flyers to their ninth straight loss.
Here is tonight's Postgame Review.
- A Lifeless Effort - This was the Flyers worst game in the nine-game losing streak. Really from the moment the Sharks got on the board, the Flyers were chasing the game, even while tied at one.At this point, when the effort is like that in the middle of a losing streak this long, it's a problem. It's an effort that screams a team is giving up on, well, everything.
The Flyers just finished November with a 2-5-7 record, including a 0-4-5 record to close out the month. And their last game of the month was their worst.
The effort hasn't warranted the results over the entirety of the nine-game streak, but it most certainly did in this game and the timing couldn't be any worse.
- Lack of Discipline - In the last three games, the Flyers have been as poor as it gets in play with the puck and lack of discipline. That was very evident in this game.The Flyers had two power plays in the game. The first lasted nine seconds. The other lasted 1:41. Both were negated by avoidable penalties.
The eventual game-winning goal scored by the Sharks in the first was on a 5-on-3 that happened from a preventable penalty, a delay-of-game minor on Michael Raffl. There have been multiple penalties from players like Jake Voracek and Wayne Simmonds, veterans who need to know better and stay out of the box to help their team.
A team that is frustrated is going to be watched under a microscope. In order to avoid falling behind and doing so quickly, you have to stay out of the box. The Flyers have allowed 18 power plays to the opposition in the last four games.
- Frustration Setting In - Not only in the penalties, but in puck control, shots, passing, everything.When a team is frustrated, everything is a little off. Players grip the stick tighter, they make mistakes with general ease and they let it show.
Claude Giroux flat out admitted it after the game. Most players did. They don't have to say it. It's already evident. The problem here is that this game was really one of arguably two where the Flyers showed frustration in every aspect, not a small portion of the game.
During this losing streak, there have been games where the Flyers have scored, built a lead and not finished. There have been games where the Flyers played well defensively and not found a way to score even one goal. There have been games where one mistake in overtime has proven to be so costly.
But on nights like this, the frustration rings loud and clear.
- Behind Closed Doors - Giroux called a team meeting after the game behind closed doors. Basically, this is a last gasp effort to save the season.You're going to hear a lot about how this team should be able to rebound and be competitive, how the results haven't been indicative of the team's play. Once you take this step, there's no turning back. It's time to turn words into actions. Those will speak the loudest, and if that doesn't happen, everyone's future is on the line.
- What's Next? - Well, basically the game on Saturday. It's now a must-win. Not because the Flyers desperate need the two points to stay in some sort of race. It's too early to be talking races, and quite frankly, one win means very little there.No, what is bigger is making good on your words and doing it immediately. Because big changes will be coming if the team doesn't change things on the ice. So that's what next, making good on your word and playing a full 60 minutes on Saturday at home before taking things on the road.
From there, it's anybody's guess.
Kevin Durso is Flyers editor for SportsTalkPhilly.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.