Orange & Black Breakdown
by Vindisi on 10/26/11 at 12:13 PM ET
The Flyers GM has never been one to sit on his hands and hope that things work itself out. With that, there have been reports that Paul Holmgren was in Columbus yesterday, but for what could be anybody’s guess (Detroit played Columbus last night). After the jump, I will give you some possible scenarios to let your mind race a little before the pre-game write-up for tonight’s game against the Habs.
Montreal Canadiens (1-5-2 | 4 pts) vs Philadelphia Flyers (5-2-1 | 11 pts)
Homer’s true passion is scouting…so there is a possibility he could be looking for a defenseman in the wake of Pronger’s injury. He doesn’t want his defenseman to wear down this early in the season, especially after it looked like Timonen was out of gas in the playoffs. Also, with the injury to Jeff Carter and the huge spending spree Columbus had this offseason, one has to think the GM is in scramble mode after Columbus has struggled out of the gate netting their first win last night. In addition, their goalie, Steve Mason, has not inspired dreams of playoff success as he has struggled from the outset. Therefore, the possible chess pieces that Homer has to play with are Hartnell and Bobrovsky. Hartnell could be reunited with Carter and could provide more offense to a team desperate for it in the early going, and Bob could become the future of the Blue Jackets in goal. Mind you, this is all simply food for thought (and discussion). Now on to the pre-game write-up:
I’ve kept this wig because the smell reminds me of you Scotty
Flyers take on a team that they haven’t had troubles with in recent years (winning 3 of 4 last year, winning playoff series in convincing fashion, etc.). One constant throughout all of that has been the Flyers ability to outmuscle the Canadiens in every aspect. They pride themselves on being small and quick, and a quick counter-rush offense. This offseason, they switched up their mindset and looked to make their team tougher to play against with the offseason signing of 32 year old Erik Cole at 4 years for $18 million who could pay dividends tonight.
Let me put this in retrospect: A similar player in Hartnell was signed for 6 years at $25.2 million at the ripe age of 25. Either Hartnell’s signing wasn’t as bad as people make it to be, or Cole’s signing was a gross overpayment.
Regardless, here is what to expect from the Canadiens and the keys for the Flyers tonight.
What to expect from the Habs:
Carey Price: I have a strong feeling he will have his A game for tonight’s game as he goes for his 6th bid for the ever-elusive 100th win. He can be downright impossible to beat at times. The Flyers need to fluster him as he seems to go on emotional rollercoasters. Considering he plays in the most pressure packed NHL city, he has performed beyond admirably to date. I see a star in the making if the Canadiens find enough offense-punch to alleviate his mindset of needing a shutout every time out there.
Michael Cammalleri: Mr. Cammalleri reminds me a lot of Briere for the sheer fact that he can snipe it from anywhere on the ice. He is the Habs most dangerous weapon on offense. If the Flyers contain his line, it could be a long night for Habs fans.
PK Subban: He is a a controversial figure amongst the players and a polarizing figure in the media for his constant attempts at one-upping the opponents. As the years go on, I see that arrogance earning him respect across the league (ala Pronger) as people will remove the loud-mouthed rookie label and talk of him more as one of the toughest veterans to play against. He is quintessential player that media outlets like ESPN love as he puts a face on the team. Look for him to stir it up tonight as he looks to get under the skin of the likes of Giroux and Briere tonight.
Hopefully Subban can a light a fire under JvR tonight
Keys for the FLYERS tonight:
JvR’s confidence: Will the playoff JvR please stand up? At times he looks non-existent. There have been talks that he is searching for his confidence. Something you don’t want to see after giving him a lucrative contract extension in the offseason. Look for him to dominate the undersized Canadiens and prove to us that the early doldrums are in the past.
4 Horsemen: Can they hold down the fort tonight in front of an inspired Habs team attempting to save their coach’s job? Without Pronger, you have to hope that the wear and tear of the heavy minutes doesn’t affect them later in the season. They will be logging a heavy workload with the likes of Walker and Lilja manning the 3rd D pairing.
Lineup changes: Is Lavvy settled with his lineup for good? Alright, so this is a no-brainer. Something tells me that Couturier could see some 3rd line minutes tonight. He has performed at a higher level than Voracek on a consistent basis all season.
My BOLD predictions for tonight:
-Habs dominate the first period, but have nothing to show courtesy of Bryz
-Simmonds gets for the Gordie Howe hat trick (goal, assist, fight)
-JvR doesn’t score, Jagr does
Lets Go Flyers!
Filed in: | Orange & Black Breakdown | Permalink
Tags: bobrovsky, bryzgalov, canadiens, carey+price, chris+pronger, flyers, habs, jeff+carter, jvr, michael+cammalleri, paul+holmgren, pk+subban, pk+subban, scott+hartnell, sean+couturier, wayne+simmonds
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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.
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