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GREENBERG: Best of the Week

Flyers columnist takes a look back at the best plays and moments of last week

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

Shot - By Ivan Provorov to put the Flyers up 1-0 over San Jose, if only because it went in ending 245:25 of even strength drought. Provorov's shot will be the last part of his game to advance from adequate to superior, so it was good to see him hit an opening.  

Steal - By Wayne Simmonds from Brent Burns, the February Norris Trophy favorite, in overtime for a breakaway winner. A star player stepped up to win a desperately needed game.

Video: SJS@PHI: Simmonds steals puck, buries OT winner

Reason to Keep Your Stick Down - Goalie Aaron Dell butterflied and made the save on Simmonds' attempted tuck for the game winner; with second effort Simmonds pushed the goalie's pads and the puck into the net.

Breaks - The Sharks made a case for goaltender interference and were turned down, the second review that went against them. Their apparent first period power-play goal, overturned because of Kevin Labanc's interference with Michal Neuvirth, could have gone either way, too. 

Move - The other one by Simmonds to beat Burns; the one in the first period that Dell stopped with a lightning-quick glove from point-blank range. After a shoulder feint that Burns apparently didn't know Simmons possessed, he kicked the puck ahead onto his stick and was in clear.

Flyer - Simmonds. Scored the only goal in the Islanders loss, too.

Cycle - By the new Sean Couturier-Jake Voracek-Jordan Weal line leading to Provorov's goal. Extended pressure that we haven't seen enough of as the Flyers struggle to score at even strength.

Video: SJS@PHI: Provorov picks the corner off juicy rebound

Pass - Drop by Voracek to charging Andrew MacDonald, who hit the post before Provorov scored on a deep rebound.

Defenseman - MacDonald. Playing with extreme confidence these days and made an offensive play when one was badly required.

Save -By Neuvirth on Labanc backhander in the slot one minute after Patrick Marleau tied the game.

 

Save in Overtime - Another on Labanc, off a two-on-one just before Simmonds scored.

Reason to Trust the Form While Awaiting the Results - After a lengthy stretch of giving up ridiculously good chances that inevitably eroded their goalies' confidence, the Flyers are playing the way they need to play to stay in the playoff race. They have given up more than two goals in only two of the last nine games - five in the Carolina meltdown and three against the Islanders. Now, can they keep that up while picking up the offense?

Reason Why a 2-2-1 Homestand Represented Progress Even if it Seemed like Nothing Less Than 4-1 Would Do - The starts have been much better. The Flyers, who had been trailing after one period in 36 of the first 54 games, outshot all five opponents in the first 20 minutes of the last five contests by a total margin of 60-24. True, a 1-0 lead against the Islanders did not hold up, but the vast majority of games are won by getting ahead and staying ahead. You have to put the percentages in your favor.

Reason to Keep the Faith Now That the Flyers have Fallen Out of Playoff Position - These same core players - Claude Giroux, Voracek, Simmonds, Mark Streit, Sean Couturier, Brayden Schenn and Steve Mason-rallied the team to the 2014 and 2016 playoffs from standings deficits far greater than what Philadelphia faces today. Despite an 8-12-4 record since the 10-game winning streak, the Flyers still have only one spot - right now, it is either Toronto or Boston but not both - to make up. You have to climb over three teams this late, it is much, much harder.  

Best Tweet

Tweet from @NHLFlyers: WAYNE IN OVERTIME! #Flyers win, 2-1! #SJSvPHINext game: 2/15 vs. CGY pic.twitter.com/kPCrukxbLv

Best Instagram

Party on, Wayne.

A photo posted by Philadelphia Flyers (@philadelphiaflyers) on

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