Monday, September 15, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Flyers searching for winning home formula

The numbers are numbing.

Flyers searching for winning home formula

The numbers are numbing.

At home, the Flyers are 1-2-1 and have been outscored 16-11. On the road, they are 3-0 and have outscored their opponents, 12-3.

At home, they are allowing a little under four goals per game. On they road, they are surrendering just one goal per game.

“We got off to a good start on the road. We were excited to get going, get playing again and for whatever reason, we haven’t had the same consistency (at home) as on the road,” captain Chris Pronger said after Sunday’s practice in Voorhees. “It’s something we had problems with last year as well. We need to be not only road warriors, but homers.”

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On Monday, the Flyers will be hosting a Toronto team that is 5-1-1 and coming off a 5-4 overtime win in Montreal on Saturday.

“We need to be better at home, come out with better jump and more energy,” said Pronger, whose team fell into a 2-0 first-period hole en route to a 4-2 loss to St. Louis Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center.

For the first time, Monday will match Flyers center Brayden Schenn against his brother, Toronto defenseman Luke Schenn, in a regular-season game. They faced each other in the preseason.

“Obviously, it’s been talked about for a while now _ the first match,” Brayden Schenn said. “I think it’s going to be exciting, not only for us, but for the family as well.”

Schenn’s mom and dad and his sisters, Madison and Macy, will travel from Saskatoon to be at the game.

The Flyers were 4-0-1 before changing the chemistry by recalling Schenn from Adirondack and demoting Zac Rinaldo to the AHL team. The addition of Schenn has scrambled the lines the last two games.

“With a new group and you bring in five or six new guys, you’re not going to have that consistent line where these guys work really well together,” winger Scott Hartnell said. “I don’t think we’ve found that niche yet, but you can’t change them every game, either. We’re sticking with the same lines next game. You just have to work hard and work together, get pucks to the net and make it hard for the goalie. It seems like every save they are making it’s a nice little shot to his chest and the play is over.

“We have to do a better job making it hard for (the goalie with) ugly, dirty goals.”

Left winger Jody Shelley, who hasn’t played this season, and defenseman Matt Walker might play Monday and put some “edge” back into the Flyers’ lineup. Shelley missed the first five games while serving an NHL suspension, and he hasn’t played in the two games since he became eligible.

There is also a chance coach Peter Laviolette will use backup goalie Sergei Bobrovsky (1-0, 2.00 goals-against average, .913 save percentage) and give the struggling Ilya Bryzgalov (3-2-1, 2.84, .895) a rest.

Saturday’s loss to St. Louis, Hartnell said, “was a case of not being ready to play. That first period was horrible. A second late to pucks; it seemed like they won every battle. Collectively as group, not just a couple of guys.”

Hartnell and Jaromir Jagr are goal-less in the seven games.

“I’m pretty sure those two will score this year,” Laviolette deadpanned.

Breakaways: Toronto’s starting goalie, James Reimer took an elbow to the head in the opening  period Saturday and was later replaced by Jonas Gustavsson, who is expected to face the Flyers….Schenn and Hartnell each had five hits in the loss to the Blues.



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Sam Carchidi Inquirer Staff Writer
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Broad Street Bull is your place for the latest updates, trade rumors, and everything connected to the Philadelphia Flyers.

Sam Carchidi Inquirer Staff Writer
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