That was a win on Saturday afternoon and this odd emotion is a little bit of pride mixed with relief.
The Flyers beat the Rangers in a tight-checking 2-1 victory to snap a four-game skid. The win was sweet, but the cause for excitement is how the Flyers won that showed a semblance of the team that everyone expected to take the ice this season.
Team defense, heavy shot volume, intense forecheck, discipline, and energetic.
Reason for optimism, maybe…
Cause for cautious optimism, absolutely.
Especially since next up is a trip to Buffalo where the Sabres are on a 17-game losing streak.
Flyers vs. Sabres: Three Storylines
Do not let it be us…
Like a ship stuck in the Suez Canal, the Sabres season is a complete disaster with no apparent solutions on deck.
- A 6-23-4 record
- 17 straight losses
- Fired coach
- Ravaged by Covid
- Selling off the pieces before the trade deadline
The Sabres are as bad as it gets.
But they are going to win another game before the season ends. They gave the Bruins a scare on Saturday before eventually getting another loss 3-2, and the Flyers had to make a hard 3rd period run to get an eventual shootout win earlier in March.
The Flyers are trending in the right direction; however, if they drop a game against the Sabres, this season quickly becomes very dicey.
Sam I am
Sam Morin, what a stud.
Big Sam has been in the lineup for two games but has made an immediate impact. He slaughtered Brendan Lemieux in Thursday’s loss to the Rangers and then carried that momentum to Saturday’s victory and notched the game-winner.
After his goal, the reaction of his teammates is a testament to how much this 25-year-old has been through to get his shot in the NHL. Multiple surgeries, an outrageous position change, and a crowded blue-line, to name a few.
Two games, trying to get too excited.
What Sam also seems to bring is a balance in the defensive pairings. He and Ghost played a solid game with complimenting skill sets, and it allows Braun to fill in with Provy on the top pairing. The apparent best option until that need is met through trade/off-season signing.
Sam Morin has given the Flyers a spark and fans should be excited to see him progress continuing tonight.
Brian Elliott had a few scary moments on Saturday but letting up one goal is a solid effort by the netminder who FINALLY got some help in front of him.
While not confirmed at the time of publishing, the assumption is that he will get the start again vs. Buffalo.
The question becomes, when can Coach AV start re-introducing struggling “starter” Carter Hart back into the rotation?
This team is fragile and it needs wins.
Riding Elliott for the remainder of the season is not an option.
Keep an eye on the team’s performance tonight to see if the collective defense is getting stronger to get Hart back into a reasonable game situation against Buffalo. Hart needs to get tuned up quickly with looming games against the Islander and Boston approaching in the next week.
Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire