Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Pens pondering changes

PITTSBURGH -- The days in between Stanley Cup playoff games provide plenty of time for rest ... and tinkering.

Pens pondering changes

The Flyers rallied from a 3-0 deficit to beat the Penguins in Game 1, 4-3. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
The Flyers rallied from a 3-0 deficit to beat the Penguins in Game 1, 4-3. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)

PITTSBURGH -- The days in between Stanley Cup playoff games provide plenty of time for rest ... and tinkering.

Back to work at Consol Energy Center less than 20 hours after their shocking overtime loss to the Flyers, Penguins coach Dan Bylsma decided to shake up Pittsburgh’s power plays.

Neither Sidney Crosby nor James Neal were working on Pittsburgh’s top unit, which went 0-for-3 against the Flyers.

Those penalty kills, as highlighted in this video, during the second and third periods were the key to keeping the Flyers in the game.

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Instead, it appears that the Penguins are looking for a two-pronged attack on the power play, hoping to spread out the talent to make for two potent units. Forward Steve Sullivan was also moved back to the point on one of the units.

Sullivan was previously featured in an all-forward power play for Pittsburgh, which they used briefly until he went down with an injury in the final week of the season. That could be back in the works, as well, which would be music to the Flyers’ opportunistic penalty killers ears.

As you know, a working power play can mask almost any inefficiency in playoff hockey.

The Flyers, of course, were 1-for-1 on the man-advantage, with Brayden Schenn capitalizing on the Flyers’ only opportunity to knot the game at 3-3 in the third period.

Schenn became the Flyers’ first rookie to post three points in a playoff game since Ville Leino did it in Game 5 of the 2010 Stanley Cup final against Chicago. 

Trivia: Can you name the six other rookies to have posted a three-point playoff game? Aside from Leino, they are: Andy Delmore, Peter Zezel (4 pt game), Brian Propp, Mel Bridgeman, Andre Lacroix, Rosaire Paiement. Honestly, I didn’t even know a guy named Rosaire Paiement played for the Flyers.

CARDIAC KIDS: Game 1 was the Flyers’ sixth comeback in which they erased a three-goal deficit in the playoffs. Here were the other five games:

Flyers 4 BOS 3, 5/14/2010 – Game 7 Eastern Conference Semifinals
Flyers 5 WSH 4 (OT), 4/10/1988 – Game 4 Patrick Division Semifinals
Flyers 5 EDM 3, 5/22/1987 – Game 3 Stanley Cup Final
Flyers 6 TOR 5, 4/17/1977 – Game 4 Quarterfinals
Flyers 4 ATL 3, 4/14/1974 (OT) – Game 4 Quarterfinals

The Flyers are now 35-37 all-time in overtime playoff games.

Want more comeback stats? Wednesday was the fifth time this season alone they gained at least a point after trailing by three goals. Here were those games:

Dec. 2 at ANA (W)
Dec. 7 at BUF (W)
Feb. 25 at CGY (W)
March 31 vs. OTT (SOL)

UPDATE: The Flyers practice at 1 o’clock at Consol Energy Center. Back with more after practice.

For the latest updates, follow Frank Seravalli on Twitter: @DNFlyers

Daily News Staff Writer
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