Flyers Crush the Canadiens

Published on January 25th, 2011

Pronger addressing the media

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Philadelphia Flyers soundly defeated the Montreal Canadiens 5-2 in one of their best all-around performances of the season.  This was the 4th of 4 meetings between the Flyers and the Canadiens this season.  The Flyers won 3 of the 4 games.  For this game, Carey Price started in net for the Canadiens and Sergei Bobrovsky for the Flyers.

Every time Habs defenseman PK Subban touched the puck, he was greeted with vociferous boos.  After Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins, he may be the most hated hockey foe in Philly.  The 1st period had a very physical tone to it.  Flyers winger Nikolay Zherdev, normally a very non-physical player, even had a big hit.  Perhaps his best of the year.  At 17:14, Habs defenseman Jaroslav Spacek got a minor for holding to give the Flyers a 5-on-3 power play.  Andrei Kostitsyn had earlier gotten a slashing minor.  The Flyers made them pay by scoring at 17:42 when forward Jeff Carter back-handed it in.  Then at 18:45, defenseman Kimmo Timonen blasted it in to make it 2-0.  The Flyers had a very strong 1st period against a determined Canadiens team.

23 seconds into the 2nd period, the Flyers struck again when Dan Carcillo banged in his 3rd goal of the season to give the Flyers a 3-0 lead.  The ice was decidedly lop-sided during the 1st half of this period as the Flyers just dominated.  The Canadiens broke up the shut-out at 17:43 when David Desharnais scored.  It is very unusual for the Flyers to not have a shut-out this late into the season.  The Flyers bounced back at 16:52 after a tic-tac-toe play made it 4-1.  Dan Briere passed it to Scott Hartnell who relayed it to Claude Giroux who smacked it past Price.  It was on the power-play making it the 3rd goal this game they scored with the man-advantage.

In the 3rd period, the Flyers looked to close out the game strongly.  They were able to kill off 4 Canadien power-plays in this period.  The Habs were 0 for 8 for the game while with the man-advantage.  They were able to add a goal at 15:17 when Mathieu Darche scored.  But an empty-netter by Daniel Briere clinched the game for the orange and the black.

The Flyers headed into the All-Star break with a very strong performance against a team likely to make the playoffs.  They got 5 goals from 5 different players, got 3 power-play goals, and defenseman Chris Pronger had 4 assists.

Pronger on the victory and impressive performance by the entire team said, “On any night it can be any of the four lines, and anybody on the back end.  Bob (Bobrovsky) played great for us early in the first, kind of held down the fort until we got our legs underneath us.  When we’re rolling the way we were there in the second period, wave after wave the one shift we were in their end.  I think we were in their end maybe a minute and a half, two minutes and had some great chances to score. That’s very deflating for the other team.”

This win was also the Flyers’ 1,000th victory on home-ice.  “Having personally attended nearly every one of these glorious victories, it certainly is impressive to be the first NHL expansion team to reach 1,000 regular season home victories,” said Comcast-Spectacor Chairman Ed Snider.  “This achievement is a true testament to the many men who have put on the orange and black and proudly wore the Flyers famous logo for nearly 45 years. This milestone is representative of Flyers Hockey. We want our home to be a very tough place for our opponents to play.”

Through 50 games, the Flyers are 33-12-5 which is the best record in the NHL.  Their next game is at Tampa vs. the Lightning on Tuesday February 1st.