The most misleading statistic in this game was the final score.  The Canadiens were completely dominated on a physical and skill level through the final forty minutes.  Much as he tried, not even Carey Price could save this one.

In Hindsight –

The Yo-Yo – In the five games since their four game winning streak the Canadiens have failed to put two wins together.  The record has gone – loss (Islanders), win (Rangers), loss (Bruins), shootout win (Carolina), loss (Philadelphia).  And they’re at .500 again – 10-10-3.

The Full Court Press – With the beginning of the second period, the Flyers elected to pressure the Canadiens young defense and it paid off. They forechecked the Canadiens to a standstill even during the three penalties they had to kill.  The turnovers, nine of them in the second period alone,  led to 18 shots and three goals.  In the game the Canadiens turned the puck over to the Flyers,  either through giveaways or Flyer takeaways, 22 times.

No Respect – The Flyers, who entered the game ranked 13th in the league in penalty killing, demonstrated no fear of  the Canadiens power play.  For good reason.  In 6:19 of Canadiens power play time the Flyers had as many shots on goal as the Canadiens (4-4).   They coughed up the puck seven times to Philadelphia, had three shots blocked and missed the net twice.   Anemic hardly describes it.

On the Other Hand – The Penalty Killers still rule.  The Habs killed off another four including 1:43 when two men short.  That’s forty straight kills over the last ten games, a total of 60:47 shorthanded without giving up a power play goal.

Looking Good – You could argue that Alexei Emelin was the Canadiens best defenseman.  He was decisive in his own end.  Moved the puck well, led the team in hits once again with six.  He even had a good scoring chance in the first period, something we shouldn’t expect every night.   If somebody asked me to choose between Emelin, Diaz and Weber, based on the last three games, Emelin is at the head of the class.

Old Reliable – With the game, at least statistically, still on the line in the third period Hal Gill was on the ice for all 1:41 the Canadiens were two men short.   With his unique shutdown goalmouth sprawl Gill blocked Claude Giroux three times in a row and the Flyers came away empty.  Gill was on the ice for 4:22 of the 6:19 the Canadiens were shorthanded.

Number 21 – Brian Gionta was on the ice for the entire 5-on-3 sequence starting with the penalty to Plekanec at 10:33 followed by the Desharnais penalty 19 seconds later.  His agressive work out near the blueline kept the Flyers from working the puck into the prime scoring areas.  Gionta is minus-5 his last two games and yet would get an “A” rating from most observers.  He took eleven shots in this game, all four of those on goal were good scoring chances.

Coming to Life – Until the third period, outside of an excellent shift around the 15 minute mark of the first period, Erik Cole was having a quiet game.  One shot on goal through two periods.  In the third period as the Canadiens tried to get something, anything going, Cole may have been the best player on the ice.  He used his size to create opportunity and had four shots and three very good scoring chances.

The Goaltender – Carey Price was great.  He had to be or this was a 6-1 hockey game.  Twelve of the eighteen shots the Flyers took in the second period were grade-A scoring chances.  He couldn’t be faulted on any of the goals.  Price was also very good at being a third defenseman, clearing pucks to the boards and deflecting goalmouth passes out of harm’s way.  Not even Carey can do it all every game.

From the Stat Sheet – Shots – Erik Cole 5, Gionta,4;  Hits -Emelin-6, Subban 4.  Blocked Shots – Gill & Gorges-4 each; Faceoffs Won/Lost – Plekanec – 7/4 (64%)

Ahead – Sidney and the Penguins at the Bell Centre Saturday night.  It will be the Canadiens eleventh game the last 19 days.  They’ll get three days off before games in Anaheim, San Jose and Los Angeles Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday of next week.

The Corsi/Fenwick Numbers

Shots directed at net while a player was on the ice at even strength,
excluding empty net situations

Game Number Team Player Goals Saved shots Missed Shots Fenwick+/- Blocked Shots Corsi+/-
20315 MTL 13 – L – CAMMALLERI, MICHAEL 0 0 6 9 4 1
0
1 5
-4
20315 MTL 14 – C – PLEKANEC, TOMAS 0 1 6 9 4 1
-1
1 6
-6
20315 MTL 15 – C – NOKELAINEN, PETTERI 1 1 1 2 3 1
1
3 2
2
20315 MTL 21 – R – GIONTA, BRIAN 0 2 4 6 6 2
0
0 5
-5
20315 MTL 26 – D – GORGES, JOSH 1 2 5 7 1 1
-3
3 6
-6
20315 MTL 31 – G – PRICE, CAREY 1 3 15 24 11 5
-5
7 11
-9
20315 MTL 32 – L – MOEN, TRAVIS 1 2 4 7 4 1
-1
2 5
-4
20315 MTL 51 – C – DESHARNAIS, DAVID 0 0 6 7 2 2
-1
2 1
0
20315 MTL 52 – L – DARCHE, MATHIEU 0 0 4 6 2 1
-1
1 3
-3
20315 MTL 60 – R – PALUSHAJ, AARON 1 1 1 2 2 1
0
3 1
2
20315 MTL 61 – D – DIAZ, RAPHAEL 0 1 4 13 5 1
-6
2 3
-7
20315 MTL 62 – D – ST-DENIS, FRÉDÉRIC 0 0 1 1 1 2
-1
0 1
-2
20315 MTL 67 – L – PACIORETTY, MAX 0 1 4 8 2 2
-5
4 0
-1
20315 MTL 68 – D – WEBER, YANNICK 0 1 3 4 3 2
-1
2 2
-1
20315 MTL 72 – L – COLE, ERIK 0 0 6 8 0 1
-3
3 2
-2
20315 MTL 74 – D – EMELIN, ALEXEI 0 0 6 10 6 1
1
1 4
-2
20315 MTL 75 – D – GILL, HAL 1 1 2 5 4 2
-1
3 2
0
20315 MTL 76 – D – SUBBAN, P.K. 0 1 9 9 3 2
0
3 5
-2
20315 MTL 81 – C – ELLER, LARS 0 1 3 7 3 1
-3
1 2
-4