Orange & Black Breakdown
Before the series began, you likely would have been hard pressed to find anyone who wouldn’t have been satisfied with splitting the first two games in Pittsburgh. But after taking a 2-0 lead in this round 1 matchup in a rather dominating fashion, the Flyers are taking advantage of a slow start by the Phillies to become the toast of the town, christening the new Xfinitiy Live Center and NBC Sports Arena with comebacks (on backs on backs).
Though the Flyers are admittedly in great shape having never lost a series after being up 2-0, there are many aspects of their game they need to focus on improving if they want to turn this two-game winning streak into something of actual meaning.
To some, the regular season might seem like an eternity. Others - such as myself - see it flash before their eyes in a haze of enjoyably meaninglessness, waiting for the real season to finally begin.
Well I’m here to tell you (as if you didn’t already know. Please tell me you already knew!) that THE WAIT IS OVER. The Stanley Cup playoffs are here, and even though the hockey gods have decided to start the Flyers against the odds-on Cup favorites there is still plenty of room for optimism on this float headed towards Broad Street.
So take the jump for a playoff preview truly worthy of a Flyers and Penguins playoff match-up!
(courtesy of both Vindisi and yours truly)
The first annual Flyers Faithful / Orange and Black Breakdown Sega NHL94 tournament is right around the corner, and this might be your last chance to sign up!
As of today there were only a handful of open slots available for the tournament, which is set to take place on April 22nd at the Play2 Parx Casino in Bensalem, PA. All tournament participants receive a retro themed t-shirt and the winner takes home a trophy and $100 in prize money. Most importantly, all proceeds will go towards the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation. Can you think of a more nostalgic and enjoyable way to support youth hockey? (Because I can’t!)
For more information and to sign up, please click here. We hope to see you there!
Flying high after a come-from-behind victory over the surging rival Penguins that ended their league-high winning streak, the Flyers will be facing a relatively hot Panthers team this evening with hopes of playing the role of streak-busters again. Florida has won four-straight, it’s longest such streak in almost four years of hockey, and is also riding hot goaltending as they cruise towards a Southeast Division title without much competition. Regardless of their play as of late, the Panthers have looked liked like last years edition when facing the Flyers this year. Philly has completely ignored their rise in the standings on the way to three relatively convincing wins this season.
The Flyers are going for the season sweep here, and they’ll be doing it with what sounds like some additional firepower in the lineup. WIth 17 of a possible 20 points so far in March, what will it take to keep the Flyers in the win column?
More after the jump
A little over a month ago, if I would have told you that the Flyers would be heading into this past weekend’s brutal gauntlet of games riding a massive wave of emotional momentum caused by a record setting shutout streak by Ilya Bryzgalov, you probably would have laughed me into internet hibernation until my thirties. Furthermore, the idea of emerging from the weekend with 3 of a possible 4 points and well within striking distance of the #1 seed would have been a ludicrous proposition, especially when you consider how consistently banged up this team has been throughout the line-up as of late.
Yet through all the inconsistencies, the Flyers sit 3 points out of the top seed in the east with 1/8th of their season left to play. Let that sink in while you wait for the rest of this story to load after the jump
ALSO: I’m working with my friends over at Flyers Faithful to put together a SEGA NHL94 tournament, with proceeds set to benefit the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation. Tournament participants get a SWEET retro themed shirt, and the winner will take home some cash AND a trophy to signify his mastery of the classics. You can find more information or sign up HERE! (Be advised - you must be in attendance to participate in the tournament. Sega genesis didn’t have system connect, believe it or not…..)
In their most recent successful contest versus the Devils the other night, the evening concluded with a complete team effort in all facets of the game. It was the type of game that a player doesn’t mind watching again in the film room, because he knows he left it all on the ice. The Flyers gave the Devils a taste of their own medicine, holding them to 17 shots all game and a mere THREE shots in the third period while playing arguably their best game all season. The situation dictated a need for success, and the Flyers came through in spades.
It was the perfect remedy to overcome a disheartening 4-1 defeat at the hands of the same Devils squad just a few nights prior. It was also the type of game that singlehandedly rejuvenates a home crowd that was in dire need of a lift. The result was a raucous atmosphere with it’s aggression focused on the enemy, a rare treat this season in Philadelphia.
Most importantly, it was a big game for the Flyers because they had said it would be a big game before the contest even begun, and they followed through on their mindset with a superior level of play. Rarely this season has it felt like this team has risen to the challenge, but Tuesday night the Flyers gave you no reason to believe they were going to go back on their word.
Fresh off a well deserved 4-1 loss on the Rock, the Flyers get a chance to quickly make amends when they host the New Jersey Devils for the final time this regular season tonight at the Wells Fargo Center.
I find it funny that I’m still having a hard time grasping the reality of the Devil’s strong play this season – especially considering their track record for success – but they were quite impressive on Sunday. Just when you think you can start to write off Brodeur in your head, he goes 4 straight games with only one goal against and 3 wins. More importantly, Volchenkov and the Devils team defense were able to hold the Flyers potent, yet suddenly sporadic offense to a measly 19 shots – the fourth fewest they’ve allowed all season.
If the Flyers want to be serious about the playoffs, they’ll have to learn to overcome these droughts tough defensive matchups. More on our neighbors to the immediate north (and slight east) after the jump.
For the Flyers, this season has been highlighted by various inconsistencies and streaks. Once one aspect of their game seems to pull together, another facet seems to come unglued. The streaks haven’t usually been pretty either. Lately, goal-less droughts and come from behind efforts have been the primary focus of such runs. The particularly scary stats that is surfacing around the internet this week, as highlighted by Bill Meltzer? The Flyers have yielded the first goal in 8 straight games, and haven’t won back-to-back efforts since January 12th. Yeesh.
It has left them on the plateau of mediocrity that embodies the bottom-middle section of the Eastern Conference, shuffling lines rather than solidifying roles and frustrating both the team and the fans in the process. Is there any hope to right the ship tonight against an Islander team that has had the Flyers number?? Abso-freaking-lutely! Let’s talk about it after the jump.
The Flyers Wives Carnival must have been pretty awkward for some of the players today.
Sure, most of the fans are going to bubbly on the surface, happy to be face to face with some of their idols. Even those that would claim to be openly upset were probably more than happy to let it slide for the day. But you can also bet that some of them let the Flyers know that they aren’t happy with their play as of late, and rightfully so given the effort. I’m sure this wasn’t done in a disrespectful fashion or with great frequency – after all, Philly is known for it’s overall quaintness; but you just KNOW it was on the minds of some of the players and fans.
Marc and I have teamed up on this edition of Flyerside Chats with our predictions of what will transpire by next week’s trade deadline. We touch on the big names being thrown out there from Nashville to Columbus. We also give you our opinions over the Flyers chances of winning Lord Stanley’s Cup (our opinions may surprise you). So sit back on this beautiful Friday in February, pop open a brew, and enjoy this friendly banter after the jump…
About Orange & Black Breakdown
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).
So what does this mean for you? The plan is to combine these
time-wasting habits passions with my love for writing to provide you with complete coverage of the Flyers from both my head and around the web, 24/7.
This is my second writing stint focusing on the Flyers, but for a much larger audience - so do be gentle. Different perspectives and opinions on the organization are welcome and encouraged. Just because I see it one way doesn’t mean I’m beyond seeing it your way as well, so speak up!
I’m always interested in interacting with readers, so find me on twitter (@marcs797) or email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and let’s talk hockey.
Thanks for reading; Lets go Flyers!