I mean…a win’s a win at least, but my God am I still stressed about it. Was it cool to watch the Flyers make a nice 4 goal comeback? Yea of course, but just the fact that it was necessary just pains me to think about. The Sabres coming into this game had lost their last SEVENTEEN games, and it looked like the Flyers were going to break that streak for the longest time. Thankfully, they actually remembered how to play hockey in the third period, and put together a pretty decent comeback. I will praise them in this blog I promise, but as is tradition with my blogs, I have to complain about the team I voluntarily cheer for.
It’s been like this for the last however many games I’ve watched, the Flyers seem incredibly disinterested in the game they’re playing. I get it, it’s a tough season playing so many games in so few days, but all the other teams are dealing with the same nonsense so the Flyers need to come out of the gates hot and stay hot. Otherwise, they risk the possibility of continuing down the path where they let up 17 goals in two games to one team, and then almost losing to one of the worst teams this century.
I guess that also goes hand in hand with their incompetence on defense, and the complete softness of this team, but it’s a really concerning trend. It just seems like at times they don’t want to play 60 minutes of hockey. Trust me, I’ll write about that more soon the next time the Flyers get shelled, but let’s at least try to have some positivity.
Ok so in terms of positive take aways from this game, I think there are multiple. An obvious take away is the fact that the Flyers displayed some mental toughness being down 3-0 to the Sabres after two. You could easily get into a “oh please don’t let us be the team that loses to them” kind of mindset, but they didn’t let that happen and grinded away until they came away with two points. Even against the Sabres, you have to appreciate that in some regard.
One thing I also really liked about the ending to this game is that AV showed some ability to handle adversity as a coach and adapt to adverse situations. In between periods in previous blowouts, I’m sure he’s gone in and yelled at the players, etc., but in this game he decided to put his faith in his leaders in multiple ways. Number one, he let the players figure it out in between the 2nd and 3rd periods. The veterans are supposed to lead this team and he straight up told them to lead.
Then in the 3rd, AV benched TK, NoPat, and Farabee in favor of who he thought were the nine best forwards in the game at that time. Is it a good thing that hopeful core 3 forwards of the future got benched tonight? Not at all but you do what you can to win hockey games at that point in time. He put his faith in his leaders and they delivered, as Coots, Giroux, and van Riemsdyk managed to tie the game before Provorov ended it. You can’t ask for that much more if you ask me.
Wrapping this all up, I’m happy to see some mental toughness, good coaching, and veteran leadership from this group. I just really wish it could be done against teams better than the Sabres and I really wish it could be done more consistently. At the end of the day, the Flyers have no won back to back games for the first time in a month, and hope to string together more wins against Buffalo and the Islanders later this week. Let’s see which Flyers team we get.