We all know what happened on Thursday night. Poor back-checking, a lack of coverage, and a lack of fighting for the puck and protecting Michael Leighton ended up in a 5-1 loss for the Flyers. All of the goals he allowed were not his fault, as he was usually beaten on loose pucks around him after he made the initial save and sometimes the second. A couple of those goals were tic-tac-toe passing plays where the Bruins were free wheeling and moving the puck around at will. In light of that poor effort, Scott Hartnell was one of the players who did not see a lot of play time in the 3rd period. Could this be a message from Lavvy?
The lines are going to be shifted today at 1 PM, and I’m pretty excited. Giroux is centering Briere and Hartnell, something I think that is going to pay dividends. Giroux and Briere can do some good things with the puck and I feel that this is a perfect line as long as Hartnell gets back to his gritty play and crashing the net. Carter is centering JVR and Leino who is returning to play today, while the Betts and Richards lines stay the same. Asham is the odd man out in this situation, but I think this is more of a chance to give Leino another shot to see if he can help this team. The two games he played he was certainly a factor in getting some pucks to the net, so hopefully he has another good game against a talented Chicago team.
With back-to-back games this weekend, speculation is that Boucher will get the start today which would make sense. I’d like to see him get some work anyways and Leighton to get some rest. We got the Rangers tomorrow, so should be a tight next couple days for Flyers world.