After a season full of some defensive woes and a couple of weeks’ worth of trade discussions, the Philadelphia Flyers (32-18-7) made a move to improve on the blue line and acquired defenseman Nicklas Grossman from the Dallas Stars.
Grossman will make his Flyers debut on Saturday afternoon when the team faces off against the Pittsburgh Penguins (32-20-5) for the third time this season.
Based on Friday’s practice, Grossman will probably be paired with Andrej Meszaros on defense.
All eyes will be on him and on the Flyers’ defensive core as a whole, as their struggles have been greatly publicized so far this season.
The Flyers are considered to be buyers in the coming weeks as the trade deadline rolls near.
Players like Nashville’s Ryan Suter and Shea Weber as well as Toronto’s Luke Schenn have been mentioned in numerous possible trade situations and rumors. But in the end, will it all matter for the Flyers?
Before this turns into a column writing off the Flyers, take a step back and look at the situation the team is in. They are currently eight points behind the Rangers for the Atlantic Division lead while resting with the fourth seed.
But on the other side of the Flyers, they are only eight points ahead of the ninth place Capitals. The Flyers could very easily be in the bottom half of the playoff tree when April rolls around and their possible match ups could spell doom.
It was something fans of the Philadelphia Flyers hadn’t seen all season.
Following the team’s 1-0 shootout loss to the New York Islanders, the team dropped their third consecutive game for the first time all year.
However, that wasn’t the only first of the night.
Considering how inconsistent Philadelphia’s goaltending has been this season, instances where the team’s net minder has stood on his head have been few and far between.
On Tuesday night, that wasn’t the case.
Prior to the two-round shootout that saw both Frans Nielson and John Tavares ice the game for the Islanders, the 65-minutes that led up to the glorified skills competition was an unabashed goaltender duel.