NHL Philadelphia Flyers

Philadelphia Flyers Suffer Another Heartbreaking Defeat To Ottawa Senators

flyers crucial loss

Eric Hartline – USA Today Sports

The Philadelphia Flyers slim playoff hopes became even slimmer on Thursday night when they fell 3-1 to the Ottawa Senators.

After his first night off in 22 games, goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov bounced back and was brilliant in stopping 31 of 33 shots. It was not enough, as a power play goal by Colin Greening with a little over five minutes left proved to be the game-winner.

Both goals were allowed in devastating fashion for the Flyers, with someone able to slip behind the defense to get a breakaway goal on each occasion. As easy as it is to blame the always talked about Bryzgalov, the blame can just as easily be put on the defenders in front of him.

With three of their regular defensemen remaining out due to injury (Nicklas Grossman, Braydon Coburn and Andrej Meszaros), the Flyers have continued to try and mix-and-match on the back end with little to no success.

The Flyers still sit seven points back of the idle New York Rangers with only eight games to play. The problem has been that Philadelphia has been unable to take care of business when given the chance. The two teams they are trying to catch in the East, the Rangers and the New York Islanders, are a combined 5-2 against the Flyers this season.

Seven of their eight remaining games are against teams that are ahead of them in the conference standings. But the Flyers, losers of three straight now, haven’t yet proved that they can capitalize on these opportunities.

Their next game is Saturday against the Buffalo Sabres, the team directly ahead of them in the standings. A win would allow them to jump the Sabres and get one spot closer to that eight seed. With eight games remaining, it is fair to say the Flyers must win a minimum of six to make their postseason dreams a reality.

Zach Slotter is a writer for www.rantsports.com. Follow him on Twitter @zslot6, Like his Facebook page, or add him to your network on Google