Monday, July 6, 2015

Flyers win, but Giroux's slump continues

Flyers captain Claude Giroux, who had finger surgery on Aug. 15, has zero points through the first four games. New head coach Craig Berube says it’s not for a lack of effort.

Flyers win, but Giroux's slump continues

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Flyers captain Claude Giroux. (Ron Cortes/Staff Photographer)
Flyers captain Claude Giroux. (Ron Cortes/Staff Photographer)

Flyers captain Claude Giroux, who had finger surgery on Aug. 15, has zero points through the first four games. New head coach Craig Berube says it’s not for a lack of effort.

“He’s fine, he’s healthy,” Berube said after the Flyers’ inartistic 2-1 win over visiting Florida on Tuesday night. “I think G’s trying a little bit too hard. He gives everything he’s got out there and sometimes it’s too much. You try too hard and you can’t accomplish the things you want to accomplish.”

Giroux had just one shot on goal Tuesday, but he did win 14 of 24 faceoffs (58 percent) and block three shots.

“I’m not confident right now,” said Giroux, who had 48 points in 48 games last season.

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He downplayed the slump.

“You always have a stretch like that during the season,” he said.

Scott Hartnell, Wayne Simmonds, Matt Read and Max Talbot are also among the players looking for their first point. As a team, the Flyers have scored a total of five goals in four games.

Goalie competition. Steve Mason has started three of the first four games, including two straight, and appears to have taken the lead in the goalie competition with Ray Emery.

 “I’m not worried about it right now,” Berube said. “Like I’ve said, it’ll play itself out. We’re going to need both guys. There’s lots of games, lots of back-to-back games.”

In three starts, Mason has a 2.02 goals-against average and a .935 save percentage.

Post-Lavy firing. A day after Peter Laviolette’s firing _ and the dismissal of one of his assistants, Kevin McCarthy _ the players were still feeling guilty.

“I think that all the guys in this room feel responsible for the two guys that lost their jobs,” defenseman Braydon Coburn said. “They’re good guys and good coaches, but unfortunately that is a part of the hockey business sometimes. And it’s a part of the game and the guys in this room understand that, and if we’ve got a chance to win a game, we’ve got to make sure to do that no matter who the coach is. There are things we tried to do a little differently tonight. A different style.”

Berube’s option. In a bizarre rule that rarely comes into play, Berube was given a choice in the third period _ accept a four-minute five-on-four disadvantage, or a two-minute five-on-three disadvantage.

He chose the former. (The Panthers failed to score.)

At 2:48 of the third period, the Flyers’ Jay Rosehill was assessed a double-minor for roughing, while teammate Zac Rinaldo and the Panthers’ Tomas Kopecky were assessed coincidental minors for roughing. In that situation, per the 2013-14 NHL Rulebook, Table 17, Example 7, the Flyers are given the “choice to play one player short-handed for four minutes or two players short-handed for two minutes.”

Breakaways.  The Flyers outhit the Panthers, 28-12. Rinaldo had five hits in 10:19…The Flyers are 2 for 19 on the PP and have killed off 17 of 20 penalties….The Flyers host Phoenix on Friday.

Inquirer Staff Writer
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