Flyers Skate Past Listless 'Griffins'
Did you do a double take? I called them the Griffins because it's pretty accurate.
The Philadelphia Flyers took down the Grand Detroit Red Griffins (aka Red Wings) 3-2 tonight on the night of Mark Howe's jersey retirement. Detroit played like a bunch of novices for almost the whole game. Henrik Zetterberg scored on Detroit's first shot on goal, but Philly got goals from Jakub Voracek and Claude Giroux.
Zetterberg's goal was a thing of beauty; a backhand - short side, upstairs over a kneeling Ilya Bryzgalov. Voracek scored on a bank in off Brendan Smith's skate on a partial wraparound.
Voracek was later rocked by a huge Kronwall hit and was in a lot of trouble getting off the ice. No penalty was called on the play, but expect the league to look into the hit. A lot of Flyers faithful thought it was a 'dirty' hit, but Kronwall isn't that type of player. He read the play perfectly as the puck came around the boards to Voracek, and Jakub had his head down, which is unfortunate because that's the area where Kronwall usually strikes. Ironically, the same hit happened to Danny Briere in the last meeting in Detroit.
The way I see it (non-biased) was that Voracek was in a position that he created himself, and Kronwall stepped into him. The hit was square, but where the league might rule otherwise is that Kronwall's shoulder hit Voracek in the head. I'm confused as to how you're supposed to avoid that (are you not supposed to make the play?) as the forward breaking out is usually low to the ice picking up steam. It's a toss up really, but the Wings got the Flyers off their game for a few minutes, as they took some penalties.
Giroux scored Philly's second goal on a bad bounce over Kronwall's stick at the blueline. For some reason, Brad Stuart decided to stand still and not support in the event of something like that happening, and Joey MacDonald did some awkward falling to the ice move that was not effective whatsoever, as Giroux went backhand for a 2-1 lead.
So when Detroit got those powerplays, they were desperately needed.
The bad thing is Detroit's powerplay sucks without Pavel Datsyuk and Nicklas Lidstrom. Ian White fumbled a puck and turned it over to the wrong guy; Giroux. He skated in alone and was stopped by MacDonald, but the juicy rebound was picked up by perennial Wings killer Max Talbot, who scored a shorty.
In the third, Kyle Quincey and Brendan Smith set up Johan Franzen, who was a ghost the whole night, for a goal and a one goal deficit. The rest is history. The pulled the goalie, yada yada yada, and lost.
There's nothing to say expect dear lord, bring Howard, Lidstrom and Datsyuk back, because at this rate St. Louis is somehow going to win the Central.
We still need some followers on Twitter and Facebook to give away our Lidstrom jersey!