Flyers working to get power play back online

Keith Yandle
      Bringing in a bunch of veteran players was supposed to improve the Flyers’ power play this season but the numbers so far have been disappointing.
      After getting off to a relatively quick start, Philadelphia’s power play has gone just three for its last 34 attempts and has dropped to 25th in the NHL at just 15.6 percent.
      Frustrating to say the least.
      It’s a big reason why the Flyers have failed to score more than two goals in each of their last six games.
      Coach Alain Vgneault has changed personnel, changed schemes and nothing seems to work.
      “Power plays to me seem to go in waves,’’ Vigneault said after Wednesday’s practice at the Flyers Training Center in Voorhees, N.J. “It’s a matter of execution. Sometimes in games we’ve gotten away from our principles. Our intentions are good. We’re spending a lot of time this year with the power-play personnel.’’
      High-ranking teams seem better at rapid puck movement.
      “Some nights have looked better than others,’’ Vigneault said. “Some nights it takes away from our momentum. There’s no doubt it’s a work in progress. I believe just like we got our penalty kill to perform better, we’ll be able to do the same thing with the power play.’’
      One player in particular the Flyers would like to get going is James van Riemsdyk. He led the team with 10 power-play goals last season but has only one this year.
      “You want guys to form chemistry between one another,’’ the coach said. “Sometimes for whatever reason that chemistry seems to fade a little bit. Sometimes you try different things to see if there are some other possible units. We have skilled players and at the end of the day they have to do the right things on the ice.’’
      Keith Yandle is one of the newcomers who has seen time with the man advantage.
      “I think the biggest thing is staying positive,’’ he said. “Working through it. You learn from your mistakes. It’s just tough to buy one right now. If you stay with it, I think that can go a long way,’’
      >Players emotional about Hayes
      Kevin Hayes scored his first goal on Tuesday night, got the puck and said he was going to give it to the son os his late brother Jimmy, who passed away in August.
      It’s been a tough time for Kevin, who also had to go through grueling rehab after a second abdominal surgery
      Yandle said the players on the bench were moved when the puck went in the net.
      “Just what he’s been through the last six months,’’ Yandle said. Hayes gestured toward the sky after the goal. “Just to see him point was special.’’
      >Brown injury evaluated
      Patrick Brown, who suffered a thumb injury in Tuesday night’s game, was getting checked by medical staff on Wednesday,
      Vigneault didn’t know the exact nature of the injury but suspects it will require week-to-week recovery time.
      The coach said one of the tests was an MRI.
      >Short shots

Carter Hart will start in goal for Thursday’s game against Tampa Bay. . .With Brown out, Oskar Lindblom will return to action after a one-game healthy scratch. . .Cam Atkinson had Wednesday off as a maintenance day.

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About Wayne Fish 1501 Articles
Wayne Fish has been covering the Flyers since 1976, a stint which includes 18 Stanley Cup Finals, four Winter Olympics and numerous other international events.