NEWARK, N.J. -- Devils coach Peter DeBoer says the pressure is all on the Flyers in this series because they are the heavy favorites. He also believes that makes it easier for his team to play.
I think theres a pressure with being the favorite in a series, DeBoer said. I think we felt that in the Florida series. I dont think theres any doubt and thats on Philadelphia here.
Thats something that isnt easy to deal with knowing youre supposed to win and not only win, but win convincingly. We like the spot were in and were just going to keep working.
Devils goalie Marty Brodeur said the Flyers gained a lot of confidence from the Penguins series and you could actually see how that manifested itself in Game 1 against the Devils, although it certainly didnt carry over to Game 2.
After the first series they had and the way they performed against Pittsburgh, I think their own expectations are pretty high like everybody else, Brodeur said.
But when youre able to play so successfully against a team like Pittsburgh, Im sure you feel good about yourself and it shows in their game.
Game 1 they had a lot of confidence and they played really well the last two periods. We just wanted to make sure we competed with them. We put our work boots on yesterday and we worked really hard to get that win.
Flyers coach Peter Laviolette said before the series began that he didnt buy into any team in the East being favorites.
You could throw it into a blender the Rangers, the Penguins, the Devils, the Flyers, and pull out any two and theres something there, I think, he said.
They Devils finished one point behind us in regular season. I dont think it matters.
When the Flyers are at theyre best, they play an up-tempo, physical brand of hockey.
When theyre at theyre worst, they look a lot like what fans at the Wells Fargo Center saw Tuesday night in Game 2.
The Flyers were credited with 24 hits in the game, but were outhit by the Devils (32) and seemed to give up too easily in battles along the boards. Thats where some of their struggles began, Claude Giroux suggested, and where possible solutions lie.
Weve got to play harder, we know that, Giroux said. Weve got to be hard on them. I dont know if we had one hit last game. We need to be more physical. Its going to put us more on the puck and its going to get us skating at the same time, too.
Beware of 1st goal
The Flyers are 4-0 in playoffs when opposition scores first; 1-3 when they score first.
You guys wanted that and you got it thats one of those things I don't have an explanation for either, Laviolete said. If youre giving me a choice, Id rather score the first goal.
That doesnt make any sense to the statistical information you just threw out there. I cant explain it. We fell behind by 2, 3 goals in Pittsburgh. I definitely dont want to do that.
The Flyers morning skate Thursday at the Prudential Center was optional and so only healthy scratches and injured players participated. Sergei Bobrovsky and Michael Leighton were in the nets.