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31 in 31

Philadelphia Flyers key statistics

Giroux looks to increase power-play production; Gostisbehere needs more shots

by Rob Reese @NHLReese / NHL.com Staff Writer

NHL.com is providing in-depth analysis for each of its 31 teams throughout August. Today, three key statistics for the Philadelphia Flyers:

 

[Flyers 31 IN 31: Season preview | 3 Questions | Top prospects | Fantasy breakdown]

 

1. Giroux power-play goals

Forward Claude Giroux scored two power-play goals in 82 games last season, matching his NHL career low (two in 42 games in 2008-09). His 23 power-play points were the fewest he's had in a full NHL season since he had 19 in 2010-11. Prior to last season, Giroux had at least 31 power-play points in four of the previous five seasons. It's feasible the Philadelphia captain could rebound on the man-advantage under new coach Alain Vigneault, who has said it's important that there is improvemment from the Flyers power play, which was tied for 22nd in the NHL last season (17.1 percent).

Video: Top five plays of 2018-19: Giroux

 

2. Gostisbehere points

Defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere went from 65 points (13 goals, 52 assists) in 78 games in 2017-18 to 37 (nine goals, 28 assists) in 78 games last season. His power-play points decreased from 33 to 14 after he had at least 22 in each of his first three NHL seasons. Gostisbehere had 41 fewer shots on goal last season than in 2017-18 (down to 180 from 221), a drop that partially explains the dip in production. He could bounce back offensively this season with an increase in shot volume.

 

3. 5-on-5 goals-against

Philadelphia allowed the second-most goals at 5-on-5 in the NHL last season (191), better than only the Ottawa Senators (219), and its 3.41 goals-against per game was third worst in the NHL (Ottawa, 3.67; Chicago Blackhawks, 3.55). The Flyers set an NHL record by having eight goalies start at least one game during the regular season. There wasn't any consistency at the position until rookie Carter Hart made his NHL debut Dec. 18. Hart finished second among NHL rookies with 16 wins in 31 games behind Jordan Binnington of the St. Louis Blues (24 wins in 32 games). Hart, whose .916 even-strength save percentage was tied for third among the nine NHL rookies who played at least 15 games, likely will start the majority of games for the Flyers this season and should help them improve on their .910 5-on-5 save percentage, which was fourth worst in the NHL.

Video: 31 in 31: Philadelphia Flyers 2019-20 season preview

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