The Devils, the team the Flyers just haven't been able to figure out for what seems like a decade, ripped the Flyers 7-3 yesterday. The Devils took over sole possession of first place with the win. The game actually started out competitive, with the Flyers getting an early powerplay goal from Danny Briere. The first period was pretty entertaining, with five total goals scored and two fights. From there, the game was ugly. The Devils dominated the Flyers in the last two periods, out-shooting and out-hitting them while trapping their way to victory. Antero Niittymaki looked normal again, so it looks like it's time for Marty Biron to step back into the No. 1 goaltending job.
The most entertaining thing in yesterday's game watching Steve Downie mix it up. He was caught a few times on microphone swearing and taunting at the Devils. He fought David Clarkson in the first period and taunted him the whole time. Downie has been a really nice surprise this season. We knew he could goon it up after hearing about all of his antics in the minors, but his play on the offensive end has been strong. He has teamed up with Scott Hartnell and Mike Richards to form the most potent line on the the team in the last few games. I hope Downie plays with these guys for the rest of the season, even when Joffrey Lupul comes back, and if/when Peter Forsberg is added.
Other than Downie, not much else went right. The Flyers look to bounce back and stay in the mix for the top spot in the Atlantic when they play the Penguins on Thursday. The Pens are without Sidney Crosby, so the time to strike is now.
Highlights of the Devils game here.
*In other Flyers news, Winger Jesse Boulerice has served his 25 game suspension and is ready to play again. He was a healthy scratch yesterday. To make room, the Flyers sent Denis Tolpeko down to the Phantoms. Boulerice should add some more grit to the fourth line, and probably will replace Riley Cote as the team goon.