Orange & Black Breakdown
by Vindisi on 11/02/11 at 03:01 PM ET
Now that the first month of the season is over, it is going to be interesting to see how this team holds up considering the team is either young and new to the NHL grind or old and beaten up from the from the long, drawn-out NHL season. With Briere, Read, Schenn, and Pronger out, you can only hope that the rest of the team avoids getting bit by the injury bug. We’ll see after the jump if the Flyers lineup, which consists of 5 rookies tonight, will hold steady against a formidable Sabres team.
Buffalo Sabres (6-4-0 | 12 pts) vs Philadelphia Flyers (6-4-1 | 13 pts)
As a fan, I find that I enjoy these 3 games in 4 nights rather than every other night. Strange as it sounds, I compare it to the lifestyles of a single person versus a person in relationship in regards to the birds and the bees. You can have it every other night with no build up of worry about the last time’s performance, or you can have it encompass your weekend with full on excitement lasting the entire weekend. Discuss your point of view in the comments as I move on to the quick hits:
-Both teams had scorching starts to the season (BUF 5-1-0 :: PHI 4-0-1) and have cooled off since then (BUF 1-3-0 :: PHI 2-4-0)
-Both have players that are tied as the 2nd leading scorers in the league [Giroux (15) and Vanek(15)]
-These are the last two teams in the Eastern Conference to not have a game decided by a shootout
Leino is in the House
What to expect from the Sabres:
First line center?: Ville Leino will now be centering the two hottest forwards [Vanek (15) and Pominville (14)] on the team with the hopes of kickstarting his season. In the offseason, he made mention that he liked the makeup of the Sabres because they were a more offensive minded team; only problem is that his numbers haven’t shown it as he has only tallied up 2 points thus far. If the Flyers slow down this line, then next order of business is…
Luke Adam: Rookie of the year in the AHL last season. Nothing against Brayden Schenn, but this kid is already producing at the big leagues. He is the 3rd leading scorer on the team. He is a big center who thrives in traffic and can be a real pain to play against. Whichever D pair gets locked up on him, look for them to keep him out of the paint…Mighty Ducks style.
Nathan Gerbe: Gerbe and Tyler Ennis (injured for this game) were everywhere on the ice last year in the playoffs. Even though they were not racking up the points, they seemed to terrorize the Flyers defenders in the playoffs due to their quickness and elusiveness bringing that series to a game 7. If the Flyers want to win this game, the diminutive forward must be contained.
Shouldn’t Gerbe wait until intermission to play with kids his own size
Keys for the FLYERS tonight:
Simmonds: Are we seeing the Flyers sour on Simmonds as an offensive threat? He started the year playing in the top 6. Now he is playing alongside Talbot and Nodl in a 3rd line, grinder role. Now I know injuries are playing a huge part into the shakeup of the rosters for the team (no Briere, Schenn, or Read), but as I’ve said in the past, is it really smart for the Flyers to be playing JvR and Voracek together, considering they both have similar styles of play. Personally, I would like them separated, but Lavvy tends to show his cards when his back is against the wall (courtesy of the injuries up front).
COOTER: Will he thrive as the second line center? This is a huge litmus test for rookie tonight. No doubt he will be hyped up for the game. It’s exciting to see how this translates on to the ice tonight. It’s definitely a good thing he is gaining this added pressure in an away game; it eliminates the worry of appeasing the home fans and allows him to play within himself in a hostile environment.
First line: Can the Flyers top line continue to carry this team at this rate? Personally, I do. There is the perfect blend of size, skill, speed, grit, and experience that can ultimately provide huge dividends each and every game. If this line keeps it up, then we need to start considering a name for this line. I’m thinking something along the line of their gifts of luscious locks on top of all their heads. Curly Headed F#$@! might be a little over the top.
My BOLD predictions for tonight:
-No-goal Nodl pots a beauty tonight
-Giroux nets 2 helpers
-Jagr shows up his replacement, Leino, on the scoresheet
Lets Go Flyers!
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The Orange & Black Breakdown looks to be the ultimate, around the clock source for news and information on the Philadelphia Flyers organization and it’s ever-present quest for the Stanley Cup. Focusing on what the team can do to achieve success is the ultimate goal.
The OBB is written and maintained by myself - Marc Siciliano. I’m a college graduate and media production professional in the sports industry with credits on projects like Hard Knocks: Bengals and 24/7 Penguins vs. Capitals: Road to the Winter Classic. A man of many hobbies, I always seem to find a way to spend a disproportionate amount of my daily routine with two things: Flyers hockey and social media (much to the dismay of my hockey impartial friends on twitter).
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