Bryz Believe

Here’s what they’re saying about Bryzgalov’s blunder


A recap of Ilya Bryzgalov-inspired quotes after the Philadelphia Flyers lost 3-1 in the fifth and deciding game of their Eastern Conference semifinal against New Jersey.

Specifically, the goal he banked in off Devils forward David Clarkson:

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Rich Hoffman, Philadelphia Daily News:

“And so, this is how it ends, one of those only-in-Philadelphia nights. It is a story that we pass down through the hockey generations, like baldness. The Flyers lost a playoff series to the New Jersey Devils and this will be the enduring symbol from the final game…

“Flyers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, trying to shoot a puck away from the front of his net, away to safety, instead seeing the puck picked out of the air by Devils forward David Clarkson and ricocheting behind him and into the goal.

“It was impossible, and it happened.”

Kevin Callahan, Courier-Post:

“Saying Bryz’s latest meltdown was just a mistake, however, misses to capture how frightfully inconsistent he has played all season, except for a stretch in March where he was good enough to be named the NHL Player of the Month.”

Sam Carchidi,

“It’s right up there with a goal from beyond center ice by Minnesota’s Barry Gibbs that gave the North Stars a 1-0 season-ending win and cost the Flyers a 1970 playoff berth. Goalie Bernie Parent lost the puck in the sun that was coming through the Spectrum windows, and he was playing for Toronto the next season.

“There was a gut-wrenching tally by Buffalo’s Gerry Meehan with four seconds left in the final game of the 1971-72 regular season, knocking the Flyers out of the playoffs. Meehan’s 80-footer somehow eluded goalie Doug Favell.

“The Goal Heard ‘Round South Philly on Tuesday was right up there with the Patrick Kane score than got past the Flyers’ Michael Leighton and gave Chicago an overtime win and the Stanley Cup in Game 6 of the 2010 Finals.”

John Gonzalez, CSN Philly:

“Up to that point, Bryzgalov had not been the Flyers’ biggest problem. That changed with one awful play. The gaffe was so big, so significant that the stat sheet should have credited Bryzgalov with the goal, or at least the assist.

“It will haunt them for a long time.”

Laviolette on Bryzgalov gaffe: “That goal was tough. It stung. It hurt.”


Peter Laviolette didn’t really throw Ilya Bryzgalov under the bus when speaking of the stunning goal that ended up booting the Philadelphia Flyers from the playoffs. He didn’t sugarcoat its impact to NBC’s Tom Layberger, either, though.

“I thought that second goal was a tough bounce,” Laviolette said. “We were in possession and the puck ends up in the back of our net. That goal was tough. It stung. It hurt. I thought our guys were playing hard and skating early in the game. That was more of an unfortunate bounce than anything else.”

In other words, he basically seconded Ilya Bryzgalov assessment of it being “unlucky.” Perhaps it shouldn’t be surprising that he stood by his goalie after allowing him to fight through some tough times throughout the 2012 playoffs.

When asked if the Penguins series took something out of the Flyers, Laviolette’s response was simple: “No.” Instead, he gave the Devils a lot of credit.

“I think you have to give New Jersey credit for the way they played defense and the way they forechecked,” Laviolette said. “They kept it from being the game that we wanted and we could never seem to get down that road.”

One other thing the Flyers (and their opponents) couldn’t do was take advantage of a 1-0 lead. In their 11 playoff games, the team who scored the first goal went a stunning 1-10, which is just another confounding thing for Laviolette and the rest of the franchise to chew on.

It sounds like they’ll do their best to let that memorable goal go, though.

Bryzgalov reflects on Game 5, gaffe: “An unlucky night”


It’s almost too easy to scapegoat Philadelphia Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov for their five-game second round letdown against the New Jersey Devils. After all, the series-clinching goal he allowed will likely live on in fans’ memories long after people forget about Philly’s tepid offense (it was only 2-1 New Jersey in the first period of what was eventually a 3-1 loss) and porous defense. One could say Bryzgalov was a victim of bad luck.

In fact, that’s basically what Bryzgalov said when he explained that gaffe to NBC’s Tom Layberger.

“I tried to put the puck in the corner for Kimmo [Timonen] for him to start a breakout,” Bryzgalov said. “It was an unlucky night.”

Bryzgalov’s not totally wrong, yet I get the feeling he’ll get a beating for not following Joel Ward’s lead by taking the blame whether it was totally fair or not.

That being said, Bryzgalov can easily be blamed for trying to make “the fancy play” rather than having crucial self-awareness. Breezy is in the league’s lower ranks when it comes to puckhandling, so one could argue that he was ill-advised to attempt a lower percentage pass.

See for yourself by watching the goal again, although if you’re a Flyers fan, you’re probably already primed to see it in your nightmares.

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Video: Ilya Bryzgalov’s 2012 playoffs in one huge gaffe

Ilya Bryzgalov

PHT’s own Joe Yerdon captures this goal the best. If you’ve played a hockey video game, you’ve likely made this mistake before: you get antsy to pass with your goalie … so you cough it up to the opposing forward for a grief-stricken goal. That’s exactly what Philadelphia Flyers albatross-in-net Ilya Bryzgalov did with New Jersey Devils forward David Clarkson in the 2-1 goal, which was the eventual series-winner as the Devils closed things out 3-1 to win the series 4-1.

Here is that highlight, which will likely haunt Breezy and the Flyers for weeks if not months:

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It kind of symbolizes Bryzgalov’s sloppy, almost unfathomable 2012 playoff mess in a way, doesn’t it? Feel free to insert your favorite “humongous bad” jokes in the comments because they’re pretty much inevitable.

Bryzgalov laments all the monkey astronauts lost to space travel

Ilya Bryzgalov - Epic - 24-7

First, a disclaimer — according to various Flyers beat reporters, nobody actually recorded all of Ilya Bryzgalov’s latest “this guy might be a genius, but he also might be on peyote” dissertation. According to Sam Carchidi of, Bryz was rambling along until the cameras went on and he declined to say anything further.

In light of that, kudos to Comcast’s John Gonzalez for piecing this together:

When asked what he would have done if he hadn’t become a professional hockey goalie, Bryzgalov didn’t hesitate.

“Astronaut,” he said quickly.

The media pack sort of blinked back at him. No one was sure whether he was kidding. He wasn’t.

“No, seriously,” he added.

At which point Bryzgalov began a long dissertation about the American space program versus the Soviet/Russian space program and which was superior. He noted that the first two animals in space were Russian dogs, which led to a strange exchange between Bryzgalov and a reporter about who had lost more monkeys in space — the Americans or the Soviets/Russians. Bryzgalov conceded that too many monkeys had lost their lives in that vocation. 

“The problem with monkeys,” Bryzgalov quipped, “they push the wrong buttons.”

Well, you know what they say: Chimpin’ ain’t easy.

/bangs gong, makes wokka wokka sound