Sunday, May 30, 2010

Flyers Fall in Game 1

Game one of the Stanley Cup Finals was a scoring slugfest. Both teams jockeying for the lead in the game. It went from 1-0 Flyers, to 1-1, to 2-1 Chicago, to 2-2, to 3-2 Flyers, and that was all in the first period. When the final horn sounded, the Flyers had lost 6-5 and are down 1-0 in the series. Michael Leighton was pulled in the second period after giving up five goals in a little over 35 minutes of play.

I'm not going to go into every goal in detail because there was so many. A positive for the Flyers was that they were getting secondary scoring from unlikely candidates. Blair Betts and Arron Asham each scored for the Flyers. Arron Asham is becoming a scoring threat because of he has a wicked and accurate slap shot.

The defense had several lapses, which resulted in turnovers, which often result in goals. Many of the goals Michael Leighton gave up weren't exactly his fault, but some he could have saved. The fact of the matter is you have to stop some of them. Five goals on twenty shots is no good for a goaltender. I think coach Peter Laviolette made the right decision to pull Leighton.

Brian Boucher, in his first game back from injury, relieved Leighton and played fairly well. He faced twelve shots and saved eleven, but that one goal was a big one. Tomas Kopecky scored the only goal of the third period, and that was the winner for the Blackhawks.

I don't think a goalie controversy should start up just yet. I think Michael Leighton deserves another start to show what he can do. If the Blackhawks have another great night against him, then maybe you switch to Boucher come game three.

Game two is critical for the Flyers. Falling down 2-0 in the series is not an option against the Blackhawks. They have a high powered offense and forced the Flyers to play to their style in game one. In game two, the Flyers need to slow the Blackhawks' offensive attack. They can do it by being physical against the Blackhawk forwards.  Game two is Monday night.

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