Flyers face 3-0 deficit once more

By JAY BOEHMER
Senior Hockey Insider — jboehmer@highhopesblog.com
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Zdeno Chara celebrates his first period goal, 30 seconds into the game. (Courtesy Philly.com)

The Flyers said going into Wednesday’s game that they would play it like a Game 7, with their season on the line. That mentality simply wasn’t there on the ice, as their play showed a lack of pride in an ugly 5-1 loss.

The Bruins took advantage of the Flyers’ nonchalant play early, with two goals in the first 63 seconds – just over a minute.

After setting a new franchise record for consecutive goals against to start a playoff game, the Flyers settled into an evening of sloppy play and overall weakness.

Sean O’Donnell said that the quick goals knocked the wind out of the Flyers and left them reeling.

“It seemed to deflate us a little bit,” the veteran defenseman said. “It took us awhile to kinda get going. We couldn’t seem to get back into it, and when we did, Thomas made the saves.”

Their passes weren’t crisp, they failed to corral pucks off the boards, and it left players vulnerable as the Bruins preyed on them – absolutely crushing Flyers skaters on multiple occasions during the early going.

Down two goals and being physically dominated, the Flyers were in no position to stage a comeback – at this point, it was about survival.

After managing to stem the tide until well into the second, the Flyers then reopened the floodgates and let in another pair of back-to-back Bruins goals that saw Brian Boucher pulled in favor of Sergei Bobrovsky.

Danny Briere said it was the team’s early breakdowns that cost them.

“That was the game right there,” he said. “We didn’t do a good job in the first minute of play … too many breakdowns. We tried after that, but it was a tough start to spot them two goals to start a game like that.”

The Flyers managed two goals early in Game 2, but the Bruins battled back with ease. The Flyers, after falling down by two goals, seemed deflated and flat.

Is the magic lost? It’s something you hate to think of with this miracle team, but they just seem to be running out of strength – both physically and mentally.

One can only handle so much pressure on their mind and body.

Down 3-0 in the series, they can’t hope for the same miracle comeback as last year. This time around, they’ve not only lost these games, but they’ve hardly competed with the exception of Game 2 – which was mostly due to one inhuman effort by James van Riemsdyk.

No one would dare say it, but there’s an eerie feeling of mourning amongst the players in the locker room, as if the season were already lost.

Flyers’ owner Ed Snyder, on the other hand, thinks his team has fought hard and will continue to fight hard.

“I thought there was a fight tonight, I don’t think they quit,” he said. “They kept playing, they played hard … I never would think this team doesn’t fight – it fights always.”

It’s going to take some Hollywood magic, but the Flyers will try one more time to get back up off the mat and, like the battered Rocky that adorns this city, fight back.

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