Last week was the beginning of the Flyers’ 3-game losing skid since they were handed two more overtime defeats from Pittsburgh (didn’t get to see thanks to the snit between OLN and Dish) and Atlanta (which I did see at the local Tilted Kilt, thanks to a man named Bill!). Surprisingly, the skid was snapped with a road victory over Pittsburgh.
I think Robert Esche’s chances of being on Team USA were eliminated with that game from Atlanta too. The Flyers went from being down 3-2 to taking the lead 5-3 which totally evaporated within the final minute thanks to the officials putting Atlanta into the 5-3 Power Play advantage. I watched the replay, the call on Hatcher was trivial yet they did nothing over Gagne being tripped when he broke away on the empty net. Feh. They lost in overtime there, but it still gave them a point and keeps them in the running for first in the Atlantic over the Rangers.
They won over Pittsburgh Saturday without blowing their 5-3 lead by staying out of the penalty box, for a change. This won’t solve their PK problem of being dead last because the excessive (or what the NHL prefers to call “zero tolerance”) interference calls will still make them short-handed for 20 minutes a game. As excited as I was to see Hatcher join the Flyers, he needs to relearn the game and Pitkanen needs to cool his temper while Hitchcock finds better players for the special teams. Anaheim unloaded Fedorov to Columbus, maybe a trade will shake up the Flyers since I am no longer attached to keeping Hatcher, I should never be excited about picking anyone the Red Wings dumps.
It’s Thanksgiving week too. I’m excited about having Friday off (with pay) since the Flyers traditionally play that afternoon! They play Boston and not Toronto (their true rivals in my opinion) this year. It’ll still be exciting.