Fedotenko: Flyers are 'not playing like a good team'

Fedotenko: Flyers are 'not playing like a good team'

March 14, 2013, 3:15 pm
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Ruslan Fedotenko won a Stanley Cup in Tampa Bay and another in Pittsburgh.
 
He’s a winner. He been in tight spots and has risen. He scored two goals in Game 7 in 2004 to give the Lightning their Cup. He knows what leads to wins and losses in hockey.
 
And right now, Fedotenko says the Flyers are taking shortcuts on the ice and “cheating.” That’s why they’re in danger of not making the playoffs.
 
“We need to play better but how to play better?” he asked. “We need to go to the foundation and work on little things. Not necessarily talk about scoring goals. Little things. Support the puck. Finish the check. Be in the right spot you need to be. Communicate. Little things like that. … We’re not playing like a good team. We take too many chances, we’re sometime cheating, forcing things that aren’t there instead of playing a patient game.” 
 
While some players, including team captain Claude Giroux, disagree with Ilya Bryzgalov that to lose both games to the Devils this week would mean the Flyers are “done” for the season, the odds are heavily stacked against them if they do lose both.
 
The Flyers remain seeded 11th in the Eastern Conference just three points behind the eighth-seeded Rangers (28 points) but New York has three games in hand which dramatically changes the picture.
 
Lose Friday to the seventh-seeded Devils at home, and New Jersey will have an eight-point lead on the Flyers.
 
Coach Peter Laviolette said the urgency to win on Friday has been ramped up, but his team can’t be consumed by the pressure.
 
“Whatever we do, we got to find it quick,” Laviolette said. “The urgency still has to increase. And what we do has got to be better. If we choke ourselves to death trying to do it, then that won’t help, either. It’s a fine line you walk to realize the importance of a game. To be able to stay loose enough to go out there and complete that game and compete well.”
 
Thursday was video day. The players didn’t like what they saw from Wednesday’s 5-2 loss.
 
“We have to forget about that one, realize what we did wrong and take our mistakes and correct going forward,” Wayne Simmonds said. “It’s up to us. We’re the guys on the ice to execute the game plan. We’re not doing that. … It’s execution. Everything. You can’t put your finger on one. There’s mental, but at the same time, I don’t think we’re playing our hardest, our best, and this is when we need to play our best.”
 
Scott Hartnell said the video wasn’t pretty.
 
“We watched a lot of film [of] mistakes that we made last game; stuff that if we do again they're going to have odd man rushes and scores,” Hartnell said. “You can't leave 2 on 1’s, guys toe-dragging a [defenseman] and having a 1 on 0 against Bryz. He can’t stop everything. You can't point fingers in there. It's good to see that stuff; good to kind of realize how bad we are and how stupid the mistakes are that we're making. It's time to correct them.”
 
In some ways, this Flyers team reminds of the 2009-10 club. The difference was, that team squeaked into the playoffs by going 4-4 in its last eight games because it was at least playing some good hockey.
 
This club can’t even win more than two games in succession.
 
“It was almost like the Kings last year back then,” Hartnell recalled. “They were struggling, close to winning games, they weren’t finding ways to win but they were playing great hockey. They went all the way and won. In 2010 we did the same thing and got hot at the end of the year and that’s a dangerous recipe to face a team that gets in the last few days and can knock off some big seeds.
 
“We want to be that team again. It’s not going to be easy. We play some great teams, we play in a hard division, and no one said we’d take the easy road. That’s one thing I hope we can count on.”
 

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