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NO TALKING

FLYERS CAN NO LONGER TALK ABOUT IMPROVING, THEY JUST HAVE TO SHOW IT

Thursday, 11.7.2013 / 11:57 PM ET / News
By Anthony SanFilippo  - Philadelphia Flyers Inside Reporter
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NO TALKING

PHILADELPHIA – The time for talking a good game publicly is over.

No longer can the Flyers use words as the crutch that promises better days ahead. No longer can they just be a team that speaks positively in order to convince themselves that good times are ahead.

After a 3-0 loss to New Jersey at the Wells Fargo Center, the only thing the Flyers can do now to convince anyone – including themselves – that there is still time for reclamation, is to score goals and win games.

That’s it. That simple… or it should be.

Instead, scoring has been a challenge. A mere 22 goals in 15 games has made the Flyers the bottom-ranked offensive team in the NHL.

Imagine two months ago, when the excitement for the season was burgeoning at the start of training camp, believing the Flyers strength would be their goaltending and their weakness would be their offense, and even more specifically, their power play.

No one would have bought it. Las Vegas wouldn’t have taken odds on it.

And yet, here we are, with the goalies playing well and the offense taking a powder.

The Power play is the most perplexing. It was the best in the sport a season ago. Now, with the same players running it, it’s the worst.

“The power play was outworked tonight,” coach Craig Berube said. “That can’t happen.”

“I think there are some games where you can go back and the power play looked good and the puck just didn’t go in. But on a consistent, nightly basis you have to outwork the penalty killing of the other team and you have to create momentum for your team, and they did not do that tonight.”

There were a lot of things they didn’t do against New Jersey.

Scoring was probably most noticeable, but aside from the malaise of the man advantage, the Flyers were losing battles along the wall all night. The physical battles that come from playing a game along the boards have to be won more than they are lost if a team is going to have success playing that style. And there’s a reason the Flyers were shutout for the second straight home game.

The one thing they did do was have a closed door, players only, team meeting after the game. It ran for about 15 minutes. Things were said. Grievances were aired. It was the kind of talk that you hope turns things around.

Whether it will work or not is another story entirely.

“We want to stick together,” said Hal Gill, who has become a go-to guy in the locker room for analysis ever since being inserted into the lineup last Saturday. “We talked about some things. We know it’s a long season and there is plenty of time for us to turn things around but it’s got to be now. It’s got to be the next game. We need to find a way to get points and to keep moving forward.

“Like I said we can’t sit there and pout. No one out there really cares about it but we in the locker room we care and we have to find a way to turn it around.”

Their first chance will come Saturday against the lowly Edmonton Oilers. And at that point they have to prove talk is cheap and results are all that matter.

“We know what we did wrong, and we’re trying to address what we’re doing wrong,” Wayne Simmonds said. “When things aren’t going for you, you tend to look for the extra play. But when things are going for you, you just throw things at the net and you get bounces, whether it’s off other teams’ skates and sticks, you know the dirty goals. I think that’s where we have to start, it all starts in practice tomorrow, I think we have to come to practice tomorrow and we have to stop in front of the net and bury every puck we can.”

Sounds good, now do it.

To contact Anthony SanFilippo email asanfilippo@comcast-spectacor.com or follow him on Twitter @InsideTheFlyers

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Giroux 78 22 45 -8 67
W. Simmonds 81 32 28 -7 60
B. Schenn 80 26 33 3 59
J. Voracek 73 11 44 -5 55
S. Gostisbehere 64 17 29 8 46
S. Couturier 63 11 28 8 39
M. Raffl 82 13 18 9 31
M. Read 79 11 15 -5 26
M. Streit 62 6 17 -1 23
S. Laughton 71 7 14 -2 21
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Mason 23 19 10 .918 2.51
M. Neuvirth 18 8 4 .924 2.27
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