Early in the season, captain Claude Giroux predicted the Flyers would make the playoffs when they had a 1-7 record.
He was right.
After the Rangers defeated the Flyers, 4-1, and took a two games-to-one series lead on Tuesday at the Wells Fargo Center, Giroux made another pledge heading into Friday’s matchup.
“We’re going to be ready for Game 4, we’re going to tie up this series, and go back to New York,” he said.
To do so, the Flyers most get their power play untracked. They were 0 for 5 on Tuesday.
They must also find a way to get shots past the Rangers’ block-happy defenders. On Friday, New York blocked 28 shots.
The Flyers had only one game all season when they had more shots blocked; Toronto blocked 30 on March 8.
Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi was named the No. 1 star after scoring a goal, collecting an assist, and blocking five shots.
Girardi said the Rangers didn’t play with much emotion or desperation in Sunday’s 4-2 Game 2 loss at Madison Square Garden.
“We knew coming in that this building was going to be loud,” he said. “It’s a great atmosphere. We just played a lot harder than we did in Game 2 and that shows through desperation.”
With the win, the Rangers took back the home-ice advantage. They will still have that advantage _ even if Giroux’s prediction comes true Friday.
Breakaways. The Rangers have successfully killed 55 of their last 59 power plays against them (93.2 percent) over the last 27 games, including 24 in the regular season…..Henrik Lundqvist has a 1.68 GAA and .930 save percentage in the first three playoff games…Brayden Schenn and Matt Read each had five hits…..Vinny Lecavalier’s line, with Schenn and Wayne Simmonds, was a combined minus-5….The Flyers are not scheduled to practice Wednesday, though Steve Mason may be on the ice. Barring a setback, Mason will start Friday, which is a virtual “must” victory for the Flyers.
Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter @BroadStBull.