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Although the Philadelphia Flyers big ticket offseason pickup goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov is 3-0 so far this postseason, and achieved 33 victories in the regular season, much of the Philadelphia Flyers game has come down to poor goaltending in the past.
Any goaltender with the Flyers in the postseason is going to have to deal with some of the most intense pressure in sports. Philly fans are unforgiving and aren't afraid to make it known.
There were points throughout the 2011-12 regular season that Bryzgalov struggled greatly, and it brought up questions surrounding his ability to play in big games to the point that he got benched for the NHL Winter Classic against New York Rangers over the holidays.
We really got to see how Bryz acts as a normal human being over the course of the HBO series "24/7 Road to the Winter Classic," and it could have created even more pressure on the goalie to no longer just perform for the Philly faithful, but to also back up his personal life in the media and on the ice.
It may not seem fair that Bryzgalov has added pressure on his game this postseason because of the in depth look we got into his everyday life during "24/7," but that comes with the business of the NHL.
Despite being 3-0 this postseason, Bryzgalov has been far from excellent posting a 3.96 GAA and a save percentage of .868. Put simply, if the Flyers have any chance at going deep into the postseason in 2012, Bryzgalov must improve his play and cannot count on the Flyers to come back in every single game.
For the better part of history, success in the Flyers organization has always come down to goaltending, and if Bryzgalov does not live up to his big contract—the reason former Captain Mike Richards, and Jeff Carter were dealt—there will be more mayhem in Philly over the lack of the Flyers' playoff success.
The weight of the Philadelphia Flyers' chances at a Stanley Cup in 2012 rests squarely on Bryzgalov's shoulders.