RALEIGH, N.C. -- One quick thought on this Monday morning:
There are quite a few alarming details about the Flyers’ start, but few are more disconcerting than the team's passing. It was one major flaw in their abysmal 2013 lockout-shortened season, and it's costing them in the first three games o 2013-14.
The Flyers really seem to panic in their own end. For long stretches of time on Sunday night, they were hemmed in their own zone by the Hurricanes because of their own miscues, which led to numerous scoring chances.
In Montreal, the puck squirted off the stick of Luke Schenn multiple times - particularly in the third period. As a team, they struggled to connect on simple outlet passes, which were quickly pounced on. Even standard "high off the glass" cries were batted down and turned into scoring chances without help from forwards.
Team defense should be a key word. Followed by better passing, which is a basic fundamental.
“Passing is the first thing that has to be better,” Kimmo Timonen said afterward. “You can get guys up in the ice (with them) and get the forecheck going.”
Despite the lack of offensive pressure - perhaps compounded by their inability to get out of their own zone - defenseman Mark Streit says the Flyers can be more patient.
“We’ve got to weather the storm and settle things down and play well defensively,” Streit said. “We can’t worry about the offense. We’ve just got to take care of things on the backend, making good breakout passes, tape-to-tape.”