VOORHEES, N.J. Danny Briere said the uniform was solid gold, not banana yellow.
Fashion debates aside, the stark color differences from the rest of the Flyers was intentional as it is to act as a visual reminder that the player adorned in such a vibrant color on the ice is not to be hit, bumped or even breathed upon, if one could help it.
But, just the fact that Briere was out on the ice with his teammates one day after the doctors had diagnosed his hairline wrist facture as “healing” was a positive for both Briere and the Flyers.
Briere skated for 25 minutes alone on one rink with assistant coaches Joey Mullen and Kevin McCarthy before joining his teammates on the other for practice.
Briere reported afterward that he had no problems catching passes or deflecting shots by others, but said that he wasn’t comfortable passing the puck or shooting, even admitting he tried a few soft wrist shots despite orders by the doctors not to go there yet.
“Please don’t show any clips of that,” Briere joked. “It was nice to get out there… Overall I thought it was a good experience.”
Briere said “it would be stretching it a little bit” to expect him to play this weekend.
Flyers chairman Ed Snider stopped by practice to see his team Tuesday, and said he has high hopes for this shortened season.
He said he goes into every season thinking his team can win the Stanley Cup. And maybe that’s because he has confidence that goalie Ilya Bryzgalov will have a great season.
“We’re in good shape in goal,” Snider said. “I have a lot of faith in Bryzgalov. I think he’ll do a real good job for us.
“A lot of his problems had to do with the different style we played as opposed to Phoenix. I really believe we will tighten up a bit and help him out. I think he is a damn good goalie.”
That tightening up could mean a shift to how the Flyers play defense in front of Bryzgalov. They appear to be loading up on big, strong defensemen this season and that could bring a change from the past when they were looking more for slick skaters who could move the puck with aplomb.
“With respect to the way teams are playing now, if you watched the playoffs and saw how teams played we couldn’t adjust to New Jersey when they were bringing all their men back," Snider explained.
“We had three forwards on five players. It’s hard to score. We have to adjust accordingly. And make sure we’re up to date with what’s going on around the league.”
Maybe that’s why John Paddock was added to the coaching staff.
Here’s a new feature… let’s see if it sticks.
I’m calling it the Lavvy: “Play With Some Jam” quote of the day.
Today there are two. These, from the coach:
First talking about Claude Giroux’s competitive nature:
“Given the choice between two players who dust it off quickly and one that grits his teeth and chews on it a little bit, I’d rather have the latter,” he said.
Second, talking about the danger of being over-hyped in the opener against Pittsburgh:
“I like energy,” Laviolette said. “If you can take that and harness it in the right way and come out with a lot of pop in the game, I’m O.K. with that. Again, given the choice of going out there and feeling around and seeing how it’s going or go out there and blow the door off the hinges, I’d rather have the latter.”
Then he continued:
“I know we were hyped up for Game 6 against Pittsburgh last year,” he said. “I’m not going to come in [to the locker room] and tell the guys, ‘Let’s just dip our big toe in and see how the water feels. I want to jump in.”