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Philadelphia Flyers Look to Bounce Back from Thursday’s Loss as They Take on the Los Angeles Kings Today

February 1st, 2014 at 3:56 PM
By Scott Erik Anderson

The Philadelphia Flyers continue their three-game California trip today as they take on the Los Angeles Kings at 4:00 p.m. The Flyers are 3-7 in their last 10 games with their most recent loss coming from the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday.

tonyjuliano / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

Photo credit: tonyjuliano / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

WHERE IS THE DEFENSE?

Lately, the Flyers defense has not shown up to games. They have been outmatched and outplayed since the start of the new year. This is coming after the Flyers won 10 of 13 games between December 12 and January 8. They are 3-8 since then. 

The Flyers have allowed 19 goals in their past five games, 37 goals in their past 10 games. The huge question is where is the defense?

The game today against the Kings is going to be one of the best chances before the Olympic break to get things turned around and heading in the right direction. The only bright spot on defense has been Nicklas Grossmann who is having one the best seasons of his career. 

Some of the blame for recent games can be put on Steve Mason. One thing is for sure, the Flyers defense needs to show up against the 29th ranked offense in the league today.

BREAK OUT OF THE STRUGGLE

Flyers captain Claude Giroux has not had a good experience when playing the Kings. He has zero goals in five career games against L.A.

There are two reasons why Giroux will snap out of it today against the Kings: 1) His recent play… 2) Jeff Carter.

Giroux has been on fire recently as he has averaged over a point in the Flyers last five games. Giroux had 13 points for the month of January (15 games). For the season, Giroux has 50 points coming from 16 goals and 34 assists. He has three goals and three assists in the past five games. 

The second reason why Giroux will break out of his struggle against the Kings is because he will be playing against former Flyers teammate Jeff Carter. Playing against Carter will make Giroux even more determined to prove people wrong. Those people he wants to prove wrong are those involved with selecting Team Canada for the upcoming Sochi Olympics. Many people believe Giroux deserved the spot on Team Canada more than Carter did.

As captain, Giroux needs to be the spark of the team and get them in gear. With his recent play and the motivation to prove people wrong, expect Giroux to snap out of the struggle and net at least a goal and an assist today.

FAMILIAR FACES

Today's game against the Kings will be the second time the Flyers have faced Mike Richards and the first time they have faced Jeff Carter since trading them a few seasons ago.

For many, watching the Flyers play against those two reminds them of one of the worst decisions that Paul Holmgren has made during his tenure as the Flyers General Manager. 

Carter has 20 goals for the Kings this season and leads the team. Richards only has seven goals, but he has 28 assists. 

Tags: Claude Giroux, defense, Hockey, Jeff Carter, Los Angeles Kings, Mike Richards, NHL, Philadelphia, Philadelphia Flyers

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