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Positioning: The thin line between being lucky and good

Despite gaining two separate leads, it was the team’s disorganized play in the final minutes of the second as well as in the opening minute of the third that cost them another two points.

However, it wasn’t the only time this weekend the team looked out of sorts.

In Saturday’s gut-wrenching 5-2 loss to the Rangers, the team’s effort in the third period lacked little if any structure.

Not to mention how terrible the penalty kill looked all weekend.

Much of the focus will undoubtedly fall upon the lost opportunities and lack of defensive support, but there is one glaring issue that has consistently been popping up over this current down turn.

Positioning.

Flyers need physicality in front of their net

With much of this season coming as a pleasant surprise, there is still one topic that is able to sour even the most positive of discussions.

Defense.

If you are a fan of the Philadelphia Flyers, the majority of your conversations this season have been about the team’s less than stellar defense.

Allowing the seventh most goals against in the entire the league, the team has a glaring issue that many feel needs to be addressed at the trade deadline that is quickly approaching on February 28.

While there is still plenty of speculation as to what the Flyers will do before the figurative clock strikes 12 on their last opportunity to improve their team (the literal deadline ends at 3 p.m., for those of you wondering), there is one thing they will have to do no matter what moves they do or do not make.

Clear out the front of their net.

Could a possible solution to Chicago's D-man woes be sitting in its press box?

It's well-known that the Chicago Blackhawks are shopping for at least one defensemen, although they're hardly the only team to be doing so.

A question which needs to be asked is: Is a possible solution to Chicago's defensive issues already on the team, but spending the majority of his season in the press box?

Finnish defenseman Sami Lepistö was a summer signing, fresh off a gold medal win at the World Championships. Despite what looked like a decent depth signing for that sixth blue line role, Lepistö has spent just 11 games in the Blackhawks lineup. There are certainly bloggers out there eager to decry him as bad (and those same writers are even eager ...

Time For the Habs To Part Ways With Hal Gill

 

When the Montreal Canadiens signed Hal Gill three years ago, everyone was wondering where the defenseman would fit into the line-up. He was big, he was slow, and he came into the organization at a time where it seemed as if the Habs had good depth on the back-end. Needless to say, the reaction wasn't entirely positive.

But over the course of the next two seasons, Gill would go on to prove everyone wrong. The road was often rocky, but the aging defenseman would often be a force to be reckoned with on the Canadiens' blue line, and definitely proved to be a valuable member of this team in more ways than one. While scoring goals a...

P.K. Subban Needs A Hero

 

Where have all the good veterans gone... and where are all the leaders? Where's our street-wise PK Subban, to fight the rising odds? Isn't there a white night upon a fiery steed? Late at night I toss and turn and dream of what PK needs. 

He needs a hero. PK's holding out for a hero until the end of the night. He's gotta be strong, and he's gotta be fast, and he's gotta be fresh from the fight. Yes, he needs a hero, and we're holding out for him until the morning light. He's gotta be sure, and it's gotta be soon, because PK thinks he's larger than life.

Okay, that was terrible, and I apologize for it immediately. But you...

Bourdon Troubled by Turnovers

The All-Star break is an exciting time of year for an NHL hockey player. Whether they are playing in the game or watching from home, the weeklong break is a welcome vacation from the marathon that is the NHL season.

For those involved, the event is a tangible example of their achievements and acknowledges a job well done.

For those who don’t take part in the game, the weeklong break is a time to re-charge their batteries in preparation for the stretch run towards the end of the season.

Some players will spend their time catching up with family or friends. Some will go on vacation, play some golf or maybe visit their hometown.

Hopefully, Philadelphia Flyers rookie defensemen Marc-Andre Bourdon will spend some of his time going over game film.

Timonen: An All-Star Honor Well Deserved

Kimmo Timonen has been around the league for a long time.

In the midst of his 13th season in the NHL, he usually looks forward to the weeklong break that comes every season with the All-Star game.

Any chance for the aging veteran to relax is warmly welcomed.

Unfortunately for Timonen, he won’t be able to enjoy that week off this year.

Flyers needed more backbone in their backcheck

It doesn’t look good.

When a 4-1 final flashes on the screen, it’s evident that something went wrong.

Especially when it comes to the Philadelphia Flyers.

In recent weeks, the goaltending and defense have come under a great deal of scrutiny. At first glance, it appears as though that was the case on Thursday night.

However, the Flyers inability to gain two points wasn’t the fault of their goalie or their defense.

Focused primarily in the offensive zone, the team failed to adequately backcheck and as a result allowed the Islanders to generate offensive attacks in transition.

Bryz and the Defense 'Bounces' Back

Deflections and bounces have become a dirty word for the Philadelphia Flyers.

At least that’s been the case in Ilya Bryzgalov’s most recent starts.

Whether it’s been on purpose or by accident, pucks have seemed to grow a pair of eyes prior to reaching Bryzgalov.

On Tuesday night, in the Philadelphia Flyers 5-1 trouncing of the Minnesota Wild, the puck began to bounce in the troubled goaltender’s favor.

A Matter of Defense

While the Philadelphia Flyers have a successful record halfway through the season, there are still things that need to be improved upon down the stretch -- namely, defense.

The Flyers are 26-13-4 heading into their 43rd game of the season. They have the offensive depth it takes to make them Stanley Cup contenders, but a team needs to be balanced throughout the entire roster to go all the way.

The struggles of Ilya Bryzgalov in net for the Flyers has been highly publicized.

He is not playing at the level expected of him.

However, the 128 goals allowed by the Flyers so far this season have not all been Bryzgalov’s responsibility. The defense has struggled, and struggled mightily in some cases.