Analyzing Craig Berube's Performance with Philadelphia Flyers in 2013-14
The Philadelphia Flyers fired Peter Laviolette three games into the 2013-14 season and replaced him with Craig Berube, opting to make him the head coach right away instead of giving him the interim tag.
Berube played for the Flyers and was an assistant with the team, furthering the criticisms of some that Philadelphia runs a sheltered organization which only hires guys who have come up through its system.
The Flyers were 0-3 when they fired Laviolette. Since then, they have played 10 games with Berube as their bench boss.
So how has Berube done, and what are his future prospects?
The Flyers are 4-6 with him as the head coach. That record is decent for a new coach, although there are other problems when you look deeper.
In his first three games at the helm, the Flyers scored just one goal in each contest.
Their offense has not improved since. Philadelphia has scored more than two goals in a game just once this season and has mustered only one goal in five games while also getting shut out in another.
The power play has been an absolutely abysmal 3-for-39 since Berube took over.
He has been preaching a new system and the players have been working within it for weeks now, but they went 0-for-5 with the man advantage in their previous two games against the Washington Capitals and New Jersey Devils.
The creativity and continuity are simply not there.
At even strength, the Flyers are not transitioning well out of their own zone and can't string together multiple passes. With the man advantage, they don't look confident when they get set up and can't finish.
Do you think Craig Berube is the right coach for the Flyers?
Berube's system is clearly not working out much on offense, although he has switched the lines up a lot over the past couple of weeks.
However, he has been unable to get Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek going. Giroux has still yet to score a goal this year while Voracek has just four total points.
Through 13 games, nobody on the whole team has more than seven points. After Vincent Lecavalier's five goals, no Flyer has more than three markers.
The defense has not improved either, with the aforementioned problems still existing in the transition game. Goaltender Steve Mason has also been relied on heavily to bail the team out.
Arguably the biggest issue has been the lack of discipline, which Berube has not seemed to improve at all.
Playing with passion and energy is a good thing, but taking too many penalties makes it so difficult to put together good stretches of consistent play.
Instead of looking simply at minor penalties committed, which does not take into account any game-by-game view and can't show how many times it actually disadvantaged the Flyers by putting them a man down, I looked at their penalty-kill stats for each game.
The Flyers averaged five penalty kills per game through the first three outings of the year. Over the past 10, they have averaged 4.2 kills per contest.
Having to kill an average of over four penalties per game makes it extremely difficult to win. Berube needs to right the ship in that regard.
The Flyers have continued to look sluggish for extended periods of time and were absolutely brutal against Washington. They also blew leads in the third period against Vancouver and Anaheim, while letting Pittsburgh put the game out of reach late as well.
They need to play hard for a full 60 minutes and overcome the minor adversities that occur throughout every game.
Things do not look great for Berube and the Flyers, and it does not seem like things have improved much since he took over either.
Philly's new coach has not fixed any of the mistakes that plagued the club under Laviolette, and while the Flyers have won a few games since, their play has not been very good or consistent at all.
At the end of the day, it's up to the players to perform, but the coach has a big part in the preparation and scheming for every matchup. It does not seem like Berube has much potential there.
Unless they turn it around big-time, I would not be surprised if the Flyers are involved in the offseason coaching carousel in the summer.
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