Thursday, April 14, 2011

Miller blanks Flyers as Sabres take Game 1

The effort was certainly there for the Flyers; unfortunately, the result was not. Despite playing much better than they had in the final weeks of the regular season, the Flyers were unable to solve Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller, who pitched a shutout in a 1-0 win for Buffalo in Game 1.

Despite having a mediocre regular season by his standards, Miller flashed the talent that made him an Olympic hero, stopping all 35 Flyers shots. The Flyers worked hard to generate a number of solid chances from a number of different angles but Miller just wouldn't be beat. The lone goal in the game came in the third period after Danny Syvret, only playing because Chris Pronger is hurt, allowed Patrick Kaleta to get position near the net and bury a goal.

While the Flyers did go 0 for 5 on the powerplay, it's hard to find much fault in how they played in Game 1. They limited the Sabres chances, got solid goaltending from Sergei Bobrovsky and controlled the play for most of the game but simply didn't get the result they wanted. Whether they get frustrated playing against a hot goalie or keep plugging away in Game 2 could be the difference as to whether they make this a series or not.

There is no need for the Flyers or their fans to panic after a Game 1 loss. If the Flyers come out in Game 2 with the same effort, pucks will start finding the back of the net. If they don't, Ryan Miller might just steal the series on his own and then there might not be anything the Flyers can do about it. I'm expecting the Flyers to make a big statement in Game 2, so I'm sticking with Flyers in 6.

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