Ahhhh, it’s good to be back.
The Philadelphia Flyers kicked off their preseason today and in no time I will be back to screaming at them from 759 miles away. I can feel it in my bones. As for the kick off to this preseason, I think the Flyers held their own well against the New York Islanders despite coming out of this with a loss.
This game started a little rough for the Flyers. They took a bit getting their legs under them, spent a lot of time in their own end for the first part. They had only 5 shots on net in that first 20, meanwhile the Islanders had 12. Alas, no goals for either side that period.
The second was much better for the Flyers. 5:41 into this period Egor Zamula rocked a shot past the Islander’s goaltender. I was kinda hoping Oskar Lindblom, who was screening the goalie, maybe tipped it in so we could start the (pre)season on an Oskar goal. Alas, a point is a point and Zamula did well to get it in the net.
That little lead did not last though as Adam Pelech got one for the Isles about 3 minutes later. However, the Flyers put up 16 shots in this period, had way better puck control. They kept the Islanders away from Carter Hart, only allowing 6 shots on net.
Into the third, Hart was swapped for Samuel Ersson, the 21-year-old, 6’3″ goaltender. Ersson did well, he allowed one goal 6:27 into the period while the Flyers were on the penalty kill. The Flyers got it tied though with a goal from Maksim Sushko 8 minutes after that.
Neither teams were able to get a goal in the remaining 5:30 of regulation so we went to a short OT. Giroux was building up to a great chance to set something up but he got his pocket picked resulting in Anthony Beauvillier flying up the ice and scoring for an Islanders win.
No shootout practice after the game like we’ve seen in other preseason games.
This was the first game we saw a lot of new names in the orange and black. I liked what I saw from Ryan Ellis. He was making things happen on the power play, blocking shots left and right. He finished the night with an assist, 23:43 in ice time (3:21 on the PP, 2:41 on the PK), 4 blocked shots total, and 6 shots on goal. He was the biggest stand out of the new guys we have heard so much about this offseason, I thought him and Ivan Provorov looked good out there. Derick Brassard did well too. He had an assist and a shot on goal but 3 hits and 15:23 of ice time (3:16). He was all up in everyone’s business, perfect for the Flyers. Also shoutout Nick Seeler because he blocked 3 shots tonight, one of which went off his face and the other went off his foot. He also had 2 hits, a giveaway, and ended with 17:10 on the ice.
As for Carter Hart, who has been another big talk of this past offseason, I thought he did well. He faced 18 shots and stopped 17 of them. In that first period he was movin and groovin, post to post. I think it was not only a good game for him physically but mentally as well. To get back in the swing of things and get back to where he wants to be, he needs to be there mentally and what better way to do that then start on a win. I’ll be cheering for him a lot this season and I can’t wait to see what else happens.
Overall, not bad first showing. Coming from such a bad place last year, the Flyers looked pretty good with all their new pieces out there. Moving forward this is going to be fun to watch. The Flyers will play the Bruins on Thursday September 30th.
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