PHILADELPHIA – If there’s something you can credit the Flyers for after their fourth consecutive loss, and seventh in eight games, it’s their honesty.
Obviously frustrated, miserable, angry and flummoxed, they at least were able to pinpoint just went wrong in their latest defeat, a 4-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Here’s an exchange between the coach and the media after the game:
Q: What was said after the second period when you addressed the team?
“You could probably guess what was said,” replied Berube.
Q: Playing the Penguins is a good opportunity to see where this team stacks up to a solid tem like that. How did they stack up and what did you see?
“They stacked up pretty well in the second period,” he said.
Q: Before the game you said they needed to give a sixty minute effort, what did they give?
“Forty,” said Berube.
Q: You didn’t like second period?
“Did you,” he asked?
Q: What was the biggest problem that you saw?
“We stopped playing,” he said. “We were standing and started watching them play…”
Q: Was it surprising or disappointing to have that kind of play?
“It was surprising but very disappointing,” he said. “Very surprising.”
And Berube wasn’t alone with the condemnation of a second period that saw the Flyers being outshot, at one point, 17-2 and take some bad penalties and give up two goals.
The players knew they were bad and yet couldn’t adjust until they got behind by a couple goals and had to chase the game against a very good Pittsburgh team.
“We were brutal,” said Wayne Simmonds, who scored the lone goal for the Flyers and was one of the few bright spots over
|Wayne Simmonds celebrates his second period power-play goal, but that was all the offense the Flyers could muster, becoming the first team since 1964 to not score at least three goals in one of their first eight games. |
the course of the 60 minutes of game action. “We weren’t executing work, getting pucks deep, weren’t turning over pucks in neutral zone. They are a good transition team. We couldn’t break the puck out of our own zone and they took advantage of that.”
The Flyers were hoping to use this game against Pittsburgh as a turning point in their season – as a game where they would come together, play their best game of hockey, and come away with a victory they could feel good about heading into a six-day break.
But, that’s not what happened.
Instead, after a marginal first period, the disappointing second period led to a strong third period effort that was wasted when in the closing minutes a turnover by Braydon Coburn led to a goal by Sidney Crosby that all but locked up the game for the Penguins and left the Flyers once again searching for answers.
“We’ve got to stay focused, stay with the plan, and if we do that we’ll be fine and start winning games,” said captain Claude Giroux. “But it was a little sloppy out there, running around and that’s not how we have to play…
“We need to start believing [in ourselves], before we start playing. I think we go into games with confidence down already, we’ve got to start believing were a good team and when we do we’ll be dangerous.”
Dangerous seems a long way away right now - especially now that Kimmo Timonen, who left the game with a lower body injury, could be joining Scott Hartnell and Vinny Lecavalier in street clothes, but there’s nobody feeling pity for the Flyers, who only have one way to turn things around – and it’s got to be internal.
“You better pick your head up, work, and get ready to play,” Berube said. “They are the only guys who will dig themselves out of this hole. The guys in the locker room. They’ve got to start believing in each other and believing in themselves and going out and playing hockey like they can.”
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