Flyers Notes: Special teams struggle again

Flyers Notes: Special teams struggle again
January 30, 2013, 9:00 am
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NEW YORK – Wayne Simmonds was angry. Furious, actually.

He slammed his gear into his bag. Threw his skates across the floor.

And hung his head low.

Another Flyers loss. Another close game, 2-1 (see game recap). Another lousy performance by the special teams.

“The thing that frustrated me the most was I had an opportunity to tie it up at the end there and the puck started bouncing on me in the slot,” Simmonds said.

In the final 58 ticks, while attacking with an extra skater, Simmonds could not get a handle on the puck with bad ice at that point.

“I couldn’t get the shot off,” he said. “I saw the mesh. Then, the puck started bouncing. I could have tied it up 2-2. It [ticked] me off a little bit.”

So did the Flyers' feeble attempt on a 5-on-3 power play in the second period that became the defining moment of the game for both teams.

The Flyers froze, unable to shoot as the Rangers' penalty killers stared them down.

“They do block a lot of shots,” Simmonds said. “We do have to get more shots through. We only had two.

“You're playing a goalie like [Henrik] Lundqvist and only get two shots on a 5-on-3? You’re definitely not going to score. I’m pretty sure we will work on that.

“Our power play -- we have to smarten up and convert on our chances. Get our shots through. We’ll figure it out. My guess is we will be working on our power play a little bit for next little while.”

The Flyers' power play is now an atrocious 5 for 37 on the season -- 13.5 percent efficiency.

Yep, they’ll be working on it.

Faceoffs
This is another area where the Flyers continue to struggle as a team. The Rangers won 66 percent of the draws.

Through seven games, the opponent has had the better faceoff percentage over the Flyers six times. That’s not something that happened very often last season.

Danny Briere, still battling a wrist injury, took three faceoffs in this game. He’s among the best. He won one of them against the Rangers, but the encouraging sign is he can take draws now and not be bothered by pain.

Claude Giroux, normally a strong faceoff man, won only 48 percent of his draws in this one.

Callahan injured
Rangers captain Ryan Callahan suffered an apparent left shoulder dislocation in the third period during a brief skirmish with Max Talbot behind the net.

Kudos to Talbot for laying off Callahan instead of punching him when the Ranger forward fell to the ice and began clutching his shoulder.

Callahan’s loss would be huge for the club.

The Rangers held on with five defensemen in the final period after Callahan got hurt.

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