The Philadelphia Flyers got off to an awful start last season, going 4-10-1 in their first 15, and still managed to fight back and make the playoffs.
While they haven’t dug quite so deep a hole this season (7-8-2), as Halford already mentioned this morning, their next 10 games will be a challenge:
Seven of 10 on the road, where the Flyers are 2-6-0 so far.
Nine of 10 against teams that made the playoffs last season. (Only the Islanders missed. And the Islanders aren’t looking like they’ll miss this season.)
True, there are a couple against Columbus, which is really hurting right now. And it’s not like the Rangers have been lights out.
But it won’t be enough to just win the games the Flyers are supposed to win. They need to make up ground, and in order to do that, they need to play considerably better than they’ve been playing.
Consider: the Flyers have been outshot in their last six games, including last night’s 2-0 loss in New York that made GM Ron Hextall so furious. Based on score-adjusted Corsi, Philadelphia is the fifth-worst puck possession team in the NHL, ahead of only Toronto, Calgary, Colorado and Buffalo.
“We kinda sat back,” captain Claude Giroux said of the Rangers game. “We had our chances in the third period. … I know I can play better. We got to find a way to get our game going here.”
Next up for the Flyers? A home date tonight against the Wild, with Minnesota rolling into town on a three-game winning streak.