Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Posted: 11:47 p.m.
By Tim Panaccio and Sarah Baicker
BOSTON Say what you want about his effectiveness on the ice, but Jeff Carter showed some true grit in playing in Game 3 on Wednesday night.
The Flyers forward logged 16:41 with a badly sprained right knee with five shots.
I actually thought Jeff was probably one of our stronger forwards, said coach Peter Laviolette. You know, for not coming back for five games, he had his legs. Hes a big person in there and a big body and he can skate well.
As the game wore on it seemed like we were lacking speed as a group out there, but where its more natural for him, its easier for him to stand out at that and he had a couple scoring chances.
Why not hold him out until Game 4?
Well, in 2006, Laviolette brought back Erik Cole in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final against Edmonton. His thinking was Cole would need some prep time if there was going to be a Game 7.
That same thinking went into the decision to play Chris Pronger limited minutes in Game 6 against Buffalo, then a regular shift in Game 7. And it played a role in the decision to use Carter here against Boston.
These days, you can make anything feel good, he said about his aching knee. Obviously, not the start we wanted and 59 minutes left. If we get the next goal, its a whole new hockey game.
I dont think we were smart with the puck. We made some bad decisions and turned some pucks over which ended up back in our end for extended periods of time. I dont think we got a lot of traffic on Tim Thomas. There werent a lot of quality chances.
The Bruins two goals by Zdeno Chara and David Krejci just 63 seconds into the opening period was a Flyer franchise record for fastest two goals allowed at the start of a playoff game.
Chairman Ed Snider was asked about the Flyers goaltending carousel, etc. He was also asked if the Flyers have the goalies to win a Stanley Cup.
You know, the seasons not over and well evaluate everything when the season is over, Snider said.
As for the yanking of goalies, which is hard to argue with given the situations within the games, Snider said, Its unusual. Thats all I can say. Its unusual, but I dont think its wrong. I think its something that had to be done and I think the coach has done a good job deciding what hes going to do and when hes going to do it.
Per the Elias Sports Bureau, the Flyers faceoff percentage Wednesday (22 percent) was the lowest for any team in an NHL playoff game in at least the last 10 years.
The Flyers won just 12 of their 55 faceoffs, compared to the Bruins 43. That had to hurt.
They have a good faceoff team, Mike Richards said. We just have to do a better job as a group. I think the centermen, to start, then the wingers come into play and defense, you got to help. The faceoffs are more than just one guy.
With Carter in the lineup, Jody Shelley was a healthy scratch. The Flyers are now 1-5 when allowing the first goal in the playoffs. Their only win was Game 6 in Buffalo. The previous fastest two goals allowed by the Flyers was 85 seconds at Edmonton on May 25, 1985 in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final. Flyers lost that one, 4-3. The Flyers have had seven goalie changes in 10 games; only one was injury related. Krejci has eight points so far in the series (four goals, four assists). Fans chanted, We Want Boosh after Laviolette pulled him in the second period and Sergei Bobrovsky had made some strong saves. ... The Flyers are 1-6 when trailing 3-0 in a series. The Flyers have just three goals on 92 shots over the last two games.
E-mail Tim Panaccio at firstname.lastname@example.org. E-mail Sarah Baicker at email@example.com