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Philadelphia Flyers Putting the “Power” Back in Power Play

PITTSBURGH - OCTOBER 07:  Head coach Peter Laviolette of the Philadelphia Flyers speaks with his players during the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Consol Energy Center on October 7, 2010 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Dominic PerilliContributor IIIFebruary 12, 2011

Like in all sports, a team’s flaws are most exposed in games of great importance.

The main flaw—if you can even call it one—for the Flyers before the All-Star break was the power play; they were ranked an ugly 19th in the NHL.

Many were skeptical about the Flyers’ chances to bring home a Cup without a solid power play—me included.

Something must’ve happened over the break. Something clicked.

Peter Laviolette knew something had to be done to fix this mistake.

Shoot more. Shoot more. Shoot more. It’s that simple.

If you don’t shoot, you can’t score. The Flyers’ power play unit consistently fed the puck to each other with no end result. There were spin moves, luscious stick-handling skills, and magnificent cross-ice passes. But, no goals.

Nowadays, life is a lot better on the ice for the power play unit. In the last 16 power plays, the Flyers scored on three of them, which figures out to around 19%. Though this number may not seem great, it is a pretty respectable percentage.

Currently, the Flyers sit at the number fourteen spot in the NHL for power plays—up five spots from before the break (according to my superior math skills).

Can the Flyers keep this going?

Let’s hope so.

Relying on even-strength goals in the playoffs will be a recipe for disaster. Sure, the Flyers can put the puck in the back of the net, but you had better believe that those playoff teams will be fighting for their lives on that ice to stop them.

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