After coming off a really bad season in 2012 and a bad preseason run, the Flyers were ready to bring it hard to the Leafs on Wednesday night — which they did in the first one and half periods. Brayden Schenn struck first for the Flyers and Nicklas Grossman was playing a strong defensive game as he acted as part goaltender during the second period to help his goalie Steve Mason keep the puck out.
It was in the end half of the second period that things started to deteriorate, and despite some key power play opportunities, the Flyers went on to lose to the Leafs.
Interestingly enough, they have lost the last three times they have opened their season at home. Despite the outcome, the Flyers were playing well early on, which is proof that they really want redeem their past seasons. Luckily, they do have the stability to do poorly for a little bit and still make it into the playoffs. The Flyers are a team that don’t really heat up until midseason, so it’s going to be rough for fans early on.
Other than just dropping the whole season, the other obstacle the team will have to face is the new re-alignment and how it will affect their chances of a playoff run.
Getting into the playoffs in the Eastern Conference is going to be tough considering that there are now 16 teams trying to get one of the eight seeds. It will also be a bit tough because the Eastern Conference now has five of the original six teams, and the Detroit Red Wings are going to create a new rivalry in the East.