• June 25, 2022

Flyers Season Ends on Bryzgalov Game Winning Own Goal

The Philadelphia Flyers, facing elimination against the New Jersey Devils, needed to find a way to respond to the Devils’ stifling defense and hold onto whatever lead they could muster if they had any hopes of forcing a Game Six.

After a final sixty minutes of play, they missed the mark, falling 3-1 to the Devils to end the 2011-12 NHL season.

Max Talbot gave the Flyers an early lead, forcing a bouncing puck in the crease past Martin Brodeur. As has been the case all postseason, the lead was short-lived. Bryce Salvador took a shot two minutes later that redirected past Ilya Bryzgalov off a Flyers’ stick and into the net.

There wasn’t much he could have done about that goal, but it was early enough in the game that the team could make up for it.

Then, at the 12:45 mark, Kimmo Timonen passed the puck back to Ilya Bryzgalov inexplicably while in the defensive zone. Instead of covering the puck as Devils forward David Clarkson skated on net, he attempted to play the puck past him. The puck bounced off of Clarkson’s leg, through Bryzgalov’s five hole, and into the history books.

Say what you will about Michael Leighton, but he never would have given up a goal like that.

The team never recovered, and only a handful of players really made an impression in the game.

Zac Rinaldo, back in the line-up while Claude Giroux served his one-game suspension, had six hits in his limited ice time and knocked defenseman Anton Volchenkov off his game (and off the ice, temporarily) early in the first period.

Eric Wellwood once again saw the least amount of ice time among any forward, and yet was the hardest working and most tenacious fore-checker for the team outside of Rinaldo. Wellwood was tremendous on the penalty kill, eating up minutes that would have previously been taken by Giroux. His finishing skills need work, but he is going to get a long look by the team this summer.

Matt Carle, while having worse results offensively than in any of the previous games, was much more defensively sound when the team needed him to be.

The rest of the team was hit and miss. Jaromir Jagr led the Flyers with 3 giveaways, while the team was culpable for 14 during the game. The powerplay was all over the map on their one opportunity against the Devils while the team themselves were caught in the box four times.

It’s not surprising that the Devils won this series. They finished the regular season on the Flyers’ heels in the standings, split the regular season-series, and never had any gaping holes in their line-up. They played a tremendous series and deserved to win.

If there is anything to be surprised about, it’s how easily the Flyers gave up. From Game One of the Semifinals, the team didn’t appear to buy in to the effort that was necessary to win and the coaching staff couldn’t adjust their game plan to address the Devils’ relentless fore-checking.

There are a lot of positives to take from this season, and the Flyers will remain in a good position as an organization to be competitive next season. For many of these players, this was their first experience in the postseason and there’s reason to think they’re only going to get better.

It’s going to take time for the bitterness of this defeat to dissolve, but it’s too soon to start dissecting what personnel changes should be made in the offseason. For now, let’s revel in the team defying expectations since October and sending the Pittsburgh Penguins home early.

Josh Janet

Josh Janet was raised in Northern New Jersey, but by an odd set of circumstances, is a Philadelphia sports fan. While recently converted to the Phillies, Josh is a diehard Flyers fan and can be expected to stay on top of the latest NHL news.

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17 Comments

  • A disappointing end to a very disappointing Series all the way around..
    Bryz will take the blame for careless play that allowed the Devils 2nd Goal tonight, but this Series was lost by the entire Team early in th eSeries in Game#2 where they collapsed in the 3rd Period and never regained their legs,confidence or continuity… The entire Team,Coaches will have to swallow the bitter pill for collectively, they were outplayed,outcoached and embarrassed by the Devils.. As I stated after the Penquins series that the Real Playoff Hockey was going to be played for the remainder of the Playoff which requires discipline,hard work and smart hockey and to be honest, the Flyers don’t have enough experienced players to play at this level yet which was very evident playing a solid Team like the Devils and the Veteran Flyer players would have to step up in this Series but they skating on fumes and unable to do so. The Flyers would have struggled to beat the other 2 Teams in the East (Rangers,& Caps) as well for these teams are Defensive Minded with better Defense and overall Goalie play than the Flyers..
    But all in all, a productive Season by the Flyers who changed over the Roster quite a bit from the previous Season and have lots of young promising players.. They need to add at least 2 Quality Defenseman with 1 needs to have some real Offensive Skills from the point to help man the Power Play and need .. They need to probably move away from older players like Pronger,Jagr,Timonem, and maybe use that $$$$ to acquire 2 Real Good Defenseman who are in their Primes and can rebuild their Defense Corp around..
    But I would like to congratulate the Flyers for playing and winning one of the most entertaining Hockey Series in a long,long time that they played versus the Penquins..It wasn’t really Playoff Hockey to me and I knew that type of up and down play isn’t sustainable for further rounds of Playoff Hockey, but it was fun to watch and the Flyers have a bight future..

  • JJ, funny title! Classic! That goal was the Epitome of his play, the entire season, & the perfect ending to a disaster of a series. Although I am pi$$ed at the way they dogged it up this series, they overshot my expectations this year. Now, as I’ve stated quite a few times now, it’s time for Homer to do his magic again. The DF needs a major overhaul, as he did to the forwards last year. We officially have these DF men under contract. Kimmo- $6,325,000; Pronger- $4,925,000; Meszaros- $4,000,000; Lilja- $750,000.
    ***Sign Shea Weber as NUMBER 1 PRIORITY***
    1- Sign Bryan Allen.
    2- Let Carle the FA, TO, mutt, walk.
    3- LTIR Pronger, after the season starts.
    4- Trade Coburn + whatever for Rick Nash.
    5- Trade JVR for Luke Schenn.
    6- Let Jagr re-retire, unless he accepts a minimum contract.
    7- &/ or resign Vorechek.
    8- Get Fartsmell to drop his NTC & include him in a trade.
    9- Send Lilja to Siberia.
    10- Let Kubina the Sloth go away.
    11- Ship Shelley to Siberia with Lilja.
    12- Trade Bob.
    13- Sign Niitymaki
    13- Give Bourdon & Gustaffson spots.
    14- Give legit shots to Wellwood, Zolnierczyk, Hamel & Cousins.
    DF-
    Weber- Schenn
    Timonen- Allen
    Meszaros- Gustaffson/ Bourdon

    Forwards-
    Nash- Giroux- Jagr
    Simmonds- Briere- Read
    Schenn- Couturier- Wellwood
    Zolnierczyk- Talbot- Sestito/ Rinaldo/ Hamel/ Cousins

    Goalies-
    Bryzgalov- Niitymaki
    All of the above can be done, & is realistic. We shall see.

  • Also if they can convince Briere to give up trade clause.
    Bryz- $5,675,000; Niitymaki-
    Weber- $7,750,000- Schenn- $3,600,000
    Timonen- $6,325,000- Allen- $3,000,000
    Nash- $7,800,000- Giroux- $3,750,000- Jagr- $1,500,000?
    Simmonds- $1,750,000- Schenn- $3,100,000 – Read- $800,000
    Zolnierczyk- $775,000- Couturier- $1,375,000- Wellwood- $600,000
    Rinaldo- $560,000- Talbot- $1,750,000- Sestito- $550,000.
    TOTAL- $51,160,000 without Briere- TOTAL- $58,160,000 with Briere. So it can be done. 8D

  • OOPS forgot Meszaros- $4,000,000, Niity- $1,000,000, Bourdon- $762,500 & Gustaffson- $900,000 Total- $64,722,500. So maybe Briere would have to go.
    Sorry long, boring night & my boys pi$$ed me off.

  • Peter Loviaolette is accountable for pathetic adjustments. We blame Charlie, we blame Andy and Juan, we blame Doug. The announcers were saying why do the Flyers keep dumping it in. It doesnt work with Broudeur. He did nothing to adjust. Its amazing how the Flyers expectations after 40 years of no championships is alot lower than the Eagles. This isnt high school. MY EXPECTATIONS especially with the annual top payrolls is a championship, I dont care about the rookies, there are PLENTY of Vets on this team. I dont care where they finished in the reg season, we have all been taught just get hot at the right time, (Giants, Cardinals, Boston). To lose 4 in a row to NJ after beating the Penuins is unacceptable.

  • The way to attack this Devil Defense is right up the middle which the Flyers never really establish.. Playing the Dump & Chase system plays right into the
    hands of the Devils and other strong Defensive Teams and especially Teams who have Goalies who can handle the puck well.. The Flyers were overmatched up and down the line-up from the fowards to the defensemen..

  • Janet your out of line blaming the lost on Bryzgalov the last 2 games after the 1st period the Flyers scored no goals and most of the series was played in the Flyers zone.

  • It might be time for the Flyers to change coaches they already changed the players this season they turned over the roster maybe its time for Peter to go.

  • this flyers team has been run like crap ever since the 90s when bobby clarke had way too much power. You can say what you want about bryz playing “well”, but a 3.46 gaa and a .887 save % will never win anyone cup, ever. He is right on the edge of being a top 5 paid goalie, and constantly takes mental breaks in net. People defend him like crazy, and say “he couldnt of saved this, or that, or this other one” but he blows, plain and simple, at least he is only here for another 8 years, I watched other goalies in these same playoffs make the saves that he couldnt… and you pay this guy 51 million dollars, he should at LEAST win you ONE playoff game, and he did not.

    What makes me the most angry is that so many people jump on and off this team, that noone realizes they have been doing this since the 90s!! look at 97, when they got to the cup and got embarrassed by detroit, big bobby wouldnt sign any of the fast speedy scoring foreign players that the other teams were and kept firing coaches, and trading people, and doing nothing to actually make the team better.

    Yet the eagles every single year, you idiots want every coach fired, and everyone traded, but that is never the case with the flyers… ever. Every guy the eagles sign has 3 weeks to play well, or he is a bad signing or draft pick… not the flyers, every single guy did what they could… its the worst

    What wonderful moves the flyers make in general, maybe I’m wrong, but I’ll be watching the team that dumped bryz on them play the team that has carter and richards on it to play in the west finals, and probably win a cup

  • I’m sick of watching this team do the same thing the eagles do every year, and noone jumps down their throats for 25 weeks a year. It’s about time someone in that organization does something

  • @turk you can blame him, he won them zero games… people blame the line change in the OT loss, he gave up a soft rebound and never even played that rebound, he played like garbage the entire playoffs, regardless of the defense or anything else. They paid this guy to fix the goalie problem, and you literally could of put any goalie in the NHL in there, and gotten the same result.

  • I wish the Flyers would change Ownership, and get rid of Ed Snider who is becoming the NHL Version of Al Davis & Jerry Jones and is way too meddling and thinks he actually knows what he’s doing and is such a control freak who only surrounds himself with “yes men” ..I can’t stand the “Mafia-Wanna-Be Snider” but the Philly Media are too chicken shit to ever question or call him out on his decisions for fear of being blackballed..

  • As long as Snider is running the show, the Flyboys and the Front Office will always be shielded from the Real Media and treated with kid gloves..
    Snider does not allow anyone to question what he, the front office,coaches and even the players do and is so image conscious and manipulative that all everyone hears are the standard company line respones ..

  • Paulman when you‘re right your right –the only thing worse than “Mr. Synder” is Jay Synder his son.

  • Zoltek, the organization blew up the team after last year. This organization is trying to do something all the time.

    Bryz’s contract sucked and many of us said that at the time. But to say they aren’t doing something just isn’t accurate.

  • They blew up the entire roster, last off-season. Did anyone actually think we were going to win a cup with a bunch of kids, an inept, flawed, sloth skating DF, & a out to lunch Russian goalie? I didn’t. They far overshot my expectations. If anybody on here says, that in the beginning of the year, that they would be in the 2nd round vying for the 3rd, is a flat out LIAR!!! Our DF sucks & our goalie daydreams in net for periods of time. That’s what cost us. BTW, WTF ever happened to back-checking & fore-checking? Is that even practiced, or a part of our teams strategy anymore. I didn’t see much of that from our forwards or DF corp all playoffs. Laviolette shares in alot of the blame, because his fixed system style, lack of in game adjustments, & his musical line-up, hurt them. Although at times Bryz played like a wheel of Swiss cheese, he was hung out to dry most of the playoffs. This entire DF corp needs to be blown up, like I’ve stated above & before. We have plenty of young talent & right now it is the deepest in recent memory, so our forwards don’t need much changes. Maybe we’ll get lucky & the new NHL CBA, that is agreed upon this off-season, will include an amnesty like in the NBA, & we can ship the Universe Czar out of here. If not, we better surround him with 6 All-Star Defense-men at all times, or it’s going to be a long 8 years.

  • BTW, for anyone to blame Snyder is a flat out Nimrod. He has our team in the playoffs, practically every year, & always spends top $$$ for players, & is never afraid to make a move. Yes, it’s been 37 years since we won the damn cup, but to blame him is flat out stupid. His major flaw, is that he is stubborn & loyal to a fault. He hangs on to personnel people too long. Ala Farwell, Clarke. But Homer has done a great job. The Bryz contract falls solely on Snyder, he signed that one personally. I have no answer for the Goalie ineptness & jinx in this city. It’s mindbogglingly frustrating! We haven’t had a goalie since Hextall’s first go around. JEESH!!! OH WELL!!! Let’s go Eagles!!!

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