A home opener to forget… forever

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The way Gritty entered the arena, I thought for sure the Flyers would win Tuesday night’s home opener handily.

Boy was I wrong.

How do I word this gingerly? The Flyers got their asses handed to them in their first home game of the season. In the first period alone, they allowed four goals. Over the next two periods when the defense could tighten up to keep the game within striking distance, they allowed four more while only scoring twice, both times on a power play, one of which was ridiculously deep into garbage time on the heels of a short-handed goal.

It sure wasn’t the home opener everyone was excited for. That said, let’s look to the good, the bad and the ugly from Tuesday night’s debacle.

The good

This is hard. Like really hard because not much good happened. I thought Konecny had a decent game until I stumbled across this tweet from Bill Meltzer:

A quick check to the box score says that he had three giveaways. I love what TK brings to the table but he can’t keep giving the puck away. If I had to narrow it down to one good thing, Power Play 1 scored twice on Tuesday. Shayne Gostisbehere and Wayne Simmonds got the goals, Giroux assisted on both of them.

Those three, for the most part, played a good game. Ghost, who is as good an offensive defenseman as they come, is really coming into his own in the defensive zone. Simmer looks like he’s fully healthy and Giroux has four points on the young year.

The bad

Dave Hakstol. This one’s tough but I think you have to take Brian Elliott out of the game after the first period. I know Cal Pickard was slated to start on Wednesday night in Ottawa, but the team needed the boost from changing goalies.

I’m not saying if Pickard plays the second and third period the Flyers would win the game, but you have to change the goaltender.

I’ll be honest, I’m partially listing this as “the bad” because I’m anticipating Hakstol playing Christian Folin or Dale Weise in Wednesday’s game due to how bad this team looked on Tuesday night.

The ugly

This team defense suuuuuuuucked!

Travis Sanheim looked inexperienced because, well, he kind of is. He took a bad penalty late in the game which led to a Sharks power play goal.

If I had a dollar for every time I saw Andrew MacDonald slide across the ice while an opposing player scores a goal I’d be a very rich man. I defended A-Mac last season, I don’t have it in me this time around. I’m at my wits end watching him play.

Gudas is gonna Gudas. He took an interference penalty in the second period and had a giveaway.

Robert Hagg also took a penalty in this game, it didn’t result in a goal but Evander Kane scored shortly after the power play ended when Hagg came racing out of the penalty box.

The team defense needs to pick it up moving forward. It’s tough to pin an 8-2 loss on one specific thing but the defense sure didn’t help.

The Flyers return to action on Wednesday night in Ottawa. I hope Hakstol doesn’t shake up the lineup too much. I would test out the definition of insanity – trying the same thing and expecting a different result.

You can follow Anthony Mazziotti on Twitter (@AntMazziotti) and e-mail him at Follow Philly Influencer on Twitter (@PHL_Influencer), Facebook and Instagram.

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