The Flyers are stuck somewhere between last place and a playoff spot. The next five games, all home, will be the final telling on whether or not this is a playoff team, or a team destined to draft high.
Kimmo Timonen's 1000th game and 38th birthday wishes were rained upon by the Tampa Bay Lightning in a 4-2 loss at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. The loss was the Flyers' fifth in their last seven games and fourth in a row in Tampa Bay.
Ilya Bryzgalov put forth a second consecutive strong start, keeping the game close throughout two periods of play. The Flyers only have one victory to their credit when deadlocked after two periods of play.
The Flyers had five minutes of overtime to work with in hopes to not allow the game to carry to a shoot-out.
What many consider to be a glorified skills competition, the Flyers have considered their lack of success in the final determination of the second point to be a nightmare. It's been especially hard on Ilya Bryzgalov, who was going to be the netminder of choice in the Flyers dance with chance.
(Pictured: Goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov makes a snow angel save in the overtime period. AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Despite going to the shootout, the Flyers managed to escape their home-and-home against New Jersey with two points.
Backed behind a brilliant game by Ilya Bryzgalov, the Flyers needed a full 65 minutes and three rounds of the shootout to beat the Devils, 2-1, and earn an incredibly important two points in their win on Friday night.
Despite going 0-for-4 on the power play, they held the Devils scoreless on their power play attempts as well, and a part of that was a result to Bryzgalov's timely saves.
Bryzgalov stopped 21 shots in the win, including 11 in the third period and over time despite his team being out-played and out-shot, 11-5, in those two frames.
(Pictured: Goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov. Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Flyers knew exactly what they needed to do if they wanted to keep their playoff hopes at a manageable level.
They didn't execute though, and it was seen clearly in their 5-2 loss to New Jersey. They were docked with seven giveaways in the loss, leading to some quick first period goals that put them in an early, insurmountable hole.
An Andrej Meszaros give away behind the net gave the Devils their first goal of the game.
Meszaros coughed up the puck to the slot and Adam Henrique put a shot on net. Patrik Elias intercepted the shot in front of Ilya Bryzgalov and beat the netminder backhanded to put New Jersey up, 1-0.
(Pictured: Devils goalie Johan Hedberg makes a save. Photo by Andy Marlin/NHLI via Getty Images)
Heading into Sunday night, the Flyers had allowed seven straight goals, blowing a 4-1 lead to Pittsburgh to lose 5-4 on Thursday and then getting shut-out 3-0 to the Bruins on Saturday.
Speed and an inability to have a physical presence in front of the net cost the Flyers the game on Thursday. Saturday's loss was three minutes of embarrassing hockey in which they were again out-worked.
Compound those two losses with the 4-2 loss to New York on Tuesday in which the Rangers scored three unanswered to win and the Flyers found themselves on a three-game losing streak and three games under .500.
Hosting the last-place Buffalo Sabres on Sunday, the Flyers needed to drastically change something.
(Pictured: Wayne Simmonds fights with Mike Weber in the first period after Simmonds' hit on Tyler Ennis. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)