Welcome to this week’s 3-on-3.
This week, I will be adding Corsi to my weekly stat analysis. Corsi is a stat that measures shots for and against while a player is on the ice, so the theory is the higher the Corsi, the more effective the player is and the more value he has to his team.
The Flyers had an up and down week, defeating Toronto 4-2 on Monday, then dropping back-to-back contests, 5-1 in Montreal on Wednesday and a 9-8 scorefest with Winnipeg on Thursday. The Orange and Black then rebounded with a solid victory Saturday against Carolina by a 5-1 count.
Let’s get to this week’s 3 stars:
- Jaromir Jagr -- Jagr scored 5 goals and had 2 assists in the past four games. He is tied for second on the team with 11 points and is a plus-3. He currently has a relative Corsi of 8.2 which is third highest on the team. He continues his stellar work on the power play and has started to be a force at even strength as well.
- Scott Hartnell -- After a tough week last week, Hartnell rebounded with his addition to the Jagr-Giroux line with 4 goals and 5 assists for 9 total points. He has also vaulted into the plus-minus lead with a +5 and is tied with Jagr for second on the team in scoring with 11 points. His relative Corsi is a respectable 5.3, which puts him 6th best on the team. Hartnell has earned power-play minutes with his improved play and his overall ice time is creeping up as well. As long as he plays determined and is willing to get dirty in front of the goal, Hartnell should continue to be successful.
- Claude Giroux -- "G" was also very good as he helped get his linemates going and himself as well. Claude had 2 goals and 5 assists in the four games which gives him 15 points on the season, good enough to lead the Flyers. That also ties him with Ottawa's Jason Spezza and Thomas Vanek of Buffalo for second-most in the NHL behind the surprising Phil Kessel of Toronto. Four of his goals have come via the power play and he has netted a pair of game winners as well, both team highs. His relative Corsi of 6.1 is good enough for 5th on the Flyers. Giroux has grown into a true star in the NHL and if he continues his maturation and growth, he could be the next big superstar in Philadelphia.
- Matt Carle -- Carle simply had a horrible week without Chris Pronger, putting up a minus-6 in 4 games and only adding 2 assists on the offensive side. His lack of direction and focus when Pronger is out of the lineup is scary. He becomes very tentative and unsure of himself, which leads to poor decision making and turnovers -- which was in full display in Thursday's loss. Carle needs to play the same way regardless of who his defense partner is.
- Ilya Bryzgalov -- Bryz had a tough week, going 1-2 and surrendering 10 goals in 3 games. His goals-against has gone up to 3.16 and his save percentage has dropped to .880. After the loss to the Jets, the Russian took all the blame and said he was “lost in the woods”. He thankfully found himself after a good performance against Carolina. For the Flyers to be a playoff contender, Bryz must be solid and consistent.
- Team defense -- Team defense has been pretty bad the past week since Pronger suffered his freak eye injury against Toronto. The rearguards were awful against the Habs, giving up 14 goals in 24 hours. Overall, they were tagged for 17 goals last week and that is never a good sign. The fowards have to support the defense better and the defense has to stop turning the puck over. Hopefully, this is just a temporary glitch and will stabilize itself soon.