Friday, September 4, 2015

Pronger-less D steps up

With Chris Pronger exiting in the first period when he was accidentally struck near his right eye by the stick of Toronto’s Mikhail Grabovski, the Flyers’ other five defensemen played more minutes and picked up the slack in Monday’s 4-2 win over the visiting Maple Leafs.

Pronger-less D steps up

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    With Chris Pronger exiting in the first period when he was accidentally struck near his right eye by the stick of Toronto’s Mikhail Grabovski, the Flyers’ other five defensemen played more minutes and picked up the slack in Monday’s 4-2 win over the visiting Maple Leafs.

     “I thought our team defense was good,” coach Peter Laviolette said after the Flyers improved to 5-2-1. “The defensemen had to jump in and double up on some of the shifts.”

    Veteran Kimmo Timonen had two assists and three blocked shots while playing a game-high 26:35. Braydon Coburn played 26:11 and had three hits. Andrej Meszaros (five hits), Matt Carle (two blocks) and Matt Walker also contributed.

     “All of them were really solid,” Laviolette said. The Leafs “have a lot of skill out there and they’re quick. They generate things, so I thought our guys did a pretty good job."

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    Ditto goalie Sergei Bobrovsky (2-0), who has been sharp in his two starts.

     With Pronger sidelined for two to three weeks (see accompanying story), Andreas Lilja will go back into the lineup.

     The Flyers have just $21,000 in cap room, so they aren’t left with a lot of flexibility.

* * *

     Just like in his previous NHL days, Jaromir Jagr saluted after each of his two goals Monday. They were his first two scores of the season.

     “We were wondering...We had a little wager on the side on whether he was going to do it or not,” Scott Hartnell said. “He hasn't lost a step with that, and he had a big grin on his face."

    Hartnell and Jagr, each of whom had two goals and an assist, were again wingers on a line centered by Claude Giroux (two assists). The line combined for four goals, four assists and a plus-six rating. Jagr had a game-high six shots.

* * *

   It'll be interesting to see if Laviolette goes back to the $51-million man, Ilya Bryzgalov, on Wednesday in Montreal. The guess here: He does.

* * *

   Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter @BroadStBull.


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After the game, Scott Hartnell talked about his breakout game and the injury suffered by Chris Pronger in the Flyers' 4-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. (Video by Sam Carchidi/The Philadelphia Inquirer)

Inquirer Staff Writer
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