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Greenberg: Game 7 up for grabs

Flyers columnist looks at what it takes to win or lose a Game 7

Wednesday, 04.30.2014 / 11:01 AM ET / News
By Jay Greenberg  - philadelphiaflyers.com
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Greenberg: Game 7 up for grabs

  • Why not? The two teams finished two points apart over 82 games and are now 3-3 after six playoff games. Last big break, forced or otherwise, probably wins it.

  • For the first time since 1987 and Ron Hextall, the Flyers have a goalie glowing hot enough to steal it.

  • They are scoring on Henrik Lundqvist. Earned goals, not soft goals, but goals nevertheless.

  • The home ice advantage practically has disappeared since the lockout. In 31 Game Sevens since the lockout, the road team has won 14.

  • Craig Berube has quickened up the Flyers by elevating Michael Raffl to the first line and putting Erik Gustafsson on defense. The Rangers, even Dan Girardi, will cough it up just like the Flyers, but you must get there fast enough to make it happen. Calling cards left at the end of Game 6 notwithstanding, this has not been an especially physical series.

  • The Rangers’ power play, on an 0-for-20 schneid, is looking for some answers. So much of special teams are confidence. and the Flyers, who busted out with two power play goals in Game 6, have all of it going to Game 7.

  • The Flyers are hot in Game Sevens, 3-0 going back to 2008, two of those wins on the road.



  • By playing like they did in the first and third periods in Game 6. In the first they conducted a turnover marathon. And when they should have been in a shutdown mode up 4-0, Steve Mason still had to stand on his head to keep the Rangers from getting back into the game. If you are going by periods won, the Rangers have carried the play in more than just a slim majority of them.

  • By turning the puck over. The Flyers had 17 giveaways in Game 6. Good luck surviving anything like that again.

  • Lack of discipline. A season-long issue has continued, at times, in the playoffs. Up 4-0 Tuesday night, the Flyers took three third-period penalties (the first began with :03 left in the second).

  • By the series following its win-one, lose-one, course. There has been no evidence of any carryover of momentum from game to game, even sometimes period to period.

  • The Rangers are even hotter in Game Sevens, 3-0 going back only to 2012. The core of this Ranger team has proven it can function well in the ultimate crucible.

  • There IS a home ice Game 7 advantage afterall, 10-5 over the 2011-13 playoffs, 90-59 all-time. Lies, damned lies and statistics, sure, but last change counts for something.

  •   Rick Nash finally comes due. Giroux finally is cooking. Maybe it’s Nash’s turn.

  • Lundqvist resumes being Lundqvist. It is not likely the Flyers will get the quality of chances again that they did in Game 6. A few big saves may be enough to save the Rangers. And he is proven commodity in making them.


SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 52 39 9 4 171 117 82
2 FLA 54 32 16 6 150 122 70
3 NYR 54 31 18 5 153 135 67
4 DET 54 28 18 8 136 132 64
5 NYI 52 28 18 6 145 129 62
6 TBL 53 29 20 4 140 127 62
7 BOS 53 28 19 6 153 146 62
8 PIT 53 27 19 7 138 135 61
9 NJD 55 27 21 7 122 123 61
10 MTL 55 27 24 4 147 145 58
11 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
12 OTT 55 25 24 6 154 169 56
13 PHI 52 23 20 9 122 137 55
14 BUF 54 21 27 6 124 146 48
15 CBJ 55 21 28 6 137 170 48
16 TOR 52 19 24 9 120 144 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Giroux 52 16 29 -8 45
J. Voracek 52 8 34 -3 42
W. Simmonds 52 19 16 -7 35
B. Schenn 50 14 15 -2 29
S. Gostisbehere 34 9 19 3 28
S. Couturier 40 9 15 9 24
M. Read 51 9 9 -5 18
S. Laughton 52 4 10 -7 14
M. Del Zotto 50 4 9 -10 13
M. Raffl 52 6 6 2 12
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Mason 12 14 7 .915 2.70
M. Neuvirth 11 6 2 .933 2.14
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