(Photo: Kate Frese)
It wasn't quite a carbon copy of Monday's 4-3 loss to the Bruins, but it came pretty close. The Flyers again had to try to erase a deficit in the third period, and nearly did.
Ultimately, it fell short, dropping the Flyers to 3-3-1 on the season with their 4-2 loss to the Rangers on Thursday. Perhaps more importantly is how they got to a 3-0 deficit again. Some old familiar flaws showed up, which is certainly concerning in the penultimate preseason tilt.
More from the Flyers loss to the Rangers in our Postgame Review.
- Carter Hart - There wasn't really much Carter Hart could do on the three goals he allowed in the defeat. The first was a deflection at the side of the net. The second came off a turnover with a man wide open at the side of the net and the third was a one-timer on the power play.
The issue with Hart's game wasn't what he did or the shots he didn't stop, it was probably that he didn't do enough. He faced just four shots in the first period and one in the third period. He was busy in the second, but that was about it, and the Flyers fell behind 3-0 in the period to boot.
Hart's still been the Flyers best goalie by the numbers, but numbers aren't enough. It's hard to say the Flyers are comfortable with him in goal for the regular season after this game.
- Corban Knight - Knight seemed like a favorite for one of the final roster spots, but left the game in the second and did not return. He has an upper-body injury and will be re-evaluated on Friday and you have to wonder what that does for his chances.
If an injury is what ultimately ends his bid for an NHL roster spot, that's a crushing blow. He had really put himself on the radar and was on his way to cracking the NHL lineup, and now this. It has to be devastating for a player who performed so well leading up to that.
- Vorobyev Locked In? - If Mikhail Vorobyev doesn't have a spot locked up after this game, I'm not sure what else he has to do. Vorobyev was a presence in the third period, picking up two assists and really asserting himself in the play.
He's had a great camp with very few hiccups and hasn't looked one bit out of place among the other forwards he's been paired with, which in this game included combinations of Oskar Lindblom, Carsen Twarynski, James van Riemsdyk and Michael Raffl.
This should have been the final push for him and a roster spot should be his now.
- Penalty Kill – It was an area of struggle before and it remains an area of struggle now. The Flyers took two penalties in the game that led to Rangers power plays. The Rangers scored on both.
Both setups were fairly simple and the Rangers were able to easily move the puck and get it where they wanted it.
The Flyers may have a great group of forwards, but they won't be successful if they can't prevent the opposing power play from scoring.
- Sluggish Play - The second period for the Flyers was, in a word, ugly. As ugly as it gets in fact.
There's no sugar coating that the Flyers have played one incredibly poor period in each of the last two games. It may be preseason, but these things can carry over into the regular season.
Too often, the Flyers have been that team that talks about playing 60 and only plays 40 or 45 or 50. There can be no shifts off. Until they really find a way to play 60 minutes and put their best foot forward for the duration of a game, it's hard to see this team doing much more than they have in previous seasons.
By the Numbers
The Flyers had a 90.32 CF% at 5-on-5 in the third period, but had 12 shot attempts miss the net or be blocked. For perspective, the Rangers had just three shot attempts in the third period, one being the empty-net goal by Kevin Hayes. The Flyers did have a CF% of 37.04 in the second period, where they struggled to generate much of anything.
Stat of the Game
In a game that was otherwise even in every category, the Rangers blocked 24 shots to the Flyers 10.