It was another rough week for the Philadelphia Flyers. It started off on a high note as the Flyers got their revenge against the Calgary Flames in a thrilling overtime win. Thursday’s bout with the Tampa Bay Lightning also went past regulation but produced different results as Philadelphia lost in the shootout. Then, the Flyers fell at the hands of the Boston Bruins 5-3 after being heavily outshot. Through these three games, there were some players who facilitated the team’s success. However, others did not perform quite so impressively. Each week, we’ll take a look at Philadelphia Flyers players who are on a hot or cold streak. This week, we’ll examine Claude Giroux and James van Riemsdyk.
Be sure to check out last week’s streaks as well.
Hot and Cold Streaks, Including Claude Giroux
Hot Streak: Claude Giroux
Claude Giroux is no stranger to clutch goals. In the very first game of the season, he found the back of the net to tie the score at four apiece with about a minute remaining in regulation. Giroux did much the same thing this week against the Lightning. With just nine seconds left, he blasted a shot past Andrei Vasilevskiy to force overtime.
In that same game, Giroux also opened the scoring. On a breakaway, he managed to curl the puck around Vasilvskiy’s left pad—a difficult move that Tampa Bay’s Ross Colton tried and failed later on. Against the Bruins, Giroux was called for tripping but jumped out of the box on a breakaway that resulted in a quality scoring chance and drained time off the remainder of Boston’s man advantage. He went on to add two assists to his total for the week. Overall, the captain led by example this week.
Honorable Mention: Derick Brassard
Though Derick Brassard racked up four penalty minutes this week, he balanced that with four points. He assisted on both of Giroux’s goals against the Lightning. Then, on Saturday, he earned two tallies of his own against the Bruins.
With the Flyers down two goals in the first period, Brassard corralled the puck in the blue paint and chipped it past Linus Ullmark to close the Bruins’ lead. Then, as the team remained behind by one in the second frame, he received a cross-ice pass from Giroux and snapped a quick shot into a wide-open net. Brassard may not be the most explosive forward on the team, but this week he made some impressive goals and set up crucial plays to facilitate scoring from his linemates. As a whole, the Brassard-Giroux-Atkinson line appears to be heating up at just the right time.
Cold Streak: James van Riemsdyk
After scoring his second goal of the season against the Dallas Stars last week, James van Riemsdyk has cooled off again. Though changes throughout the Flyers roster saw him advance up to the first line, on Sean Couturier’s wing, he didn’t have anything to show for the extra minutes.
Van Riemsdyk finished the week with no goals and no assists. He had two penalty minutes against Calgary and a -2 plus-minus through the three games. His Corsi-for percentage was sub-50 against the Flames and Bruins. None of these statistics are horrible, and van Riemsdyk does have the potential to be a top-six player. When he’s hot, his skillful deflections in the blue paint make him a dangerous weapon. However, the Flyers have seen few of those from him thus far. If van Riemsdyk is going to remain on the first line while in a scoring lull, he’ll need to compensate in other areas of the game.