Ray Emery: 'We haven't given up'
The Flyers react after giving up a goal in the third period of their 3-0 loss to the Devils. (AP)
The team captain walked out. Just left the building. Left it for others to face the music after a 15-minute team meeting.
That’s how far things have slipped for the free-falling Flyers, who lost again, 3-0, to the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night in what might have been the easiest shutout among the 12 Marty Brodeur has had against the franchise during his brilliant career (see Instant Replay).
“When things aren’t going for you, you tend to look for the extra play,” Wayne Simmonds said. “When things are going for you, you just throw things at the net and get bounces and get stuff off the other team’s skates and sticks.
“You get the dirty goals. That’s where it has to start at practice [on Friday]. We got to come to practice, stop in the front of the net and bury every puck we can.”
The Flyers mustered 22 shots. Outside of two scrums in front of the net where the puck was at Brodeur’s feet, and two busted two-on-one rushes, the Flyers never really tested him.
Fans' frustration began with boos in the first period and carried through right to the end. They got even louder when Andrej Meszaros, who was checked off a puck for one Devils' goal, turned another puck over to Jaromir Jagr with two ticks left on the clock for an empty-netter that really put a spike in the final score.
“You hear the boos,” Simmonds said. “That just means we’re not doing our job. The fans react to what they see and it’s not good enough.”
Coach Craig Berube was tight-lipped again about the lack of motivation to carry through and make something happen. Not just five-on-five, but on the power play where the Flyers put up such a lazy effort, Brodeur only had to flick away two shots on three Flyer power plays the entire night.
“Yeah, very frustrating, especially the power play,” Berube said. “Outworked. The power play was outworked tonight.
“I think there are some games where you can go back and the power play looked good and the puck didn’t just go in.
“But on a consistent nightly basis you have to outwork the penalty killing of the other team and you have to create momentum for your team, and they did not do that tonight.”
Claude Giroux handles the first unit power play, but he left the building after speaking to club chairman Ed Snider, whom he patted on the back outside the dressing room.
Offering comfort to the owner? Shouldn't it be the other way around given Giroux still doesn’t have a goal this season?
No one would provide specifics about the team meeting except to say it addressed accountability, work ethic and competitiveness (see story).
Giroux has accountability to his teammates not to walk away and he chose to do so. That’s a problem on a losing club. He’s about to make $66.2 million starting next season when his eight-year extension kicks in. He needs to stand up and answer questions.
Will a team meeting help?
“I think they can be good,” Berube said. “I think they can recognize what they have to do better as a team and guys can talk about things. It’s not a hard game.
“It’s the competitiveness and a will to win and doing all the little things right to win, and right now we’re not good enough. We’re not doing good enough. That’s the bottom line.”