March featured a myriad of problems for the Flyers.
Inconsistency, lack of focus and the inability to win close games are just a few of the issues that hampered the fleeting Eastern Conference leaders into a 6-5-4 monthly record. However, what Atlanta Thrashers forward Evander Kane told the media after a 1-0 shutout victory over the stumped Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday, may be the most severe and telling of the group.
“Even last year I think we won all four games against them,” said Kane, whose squad took the season series 3-1, including two in Philly. “It’s a fun building to play in and I definitely enjoy it.”
Fun building? Enjoy it? The Spectrum just rolled over in its own rubble.
WELLS FARGO CENTER – With the Atlantic Division-rival New Jersey Devils on the schedule for Friday and revenge on the menu against the New York Rangers on Sunday, it’s easy to see how Thursday night’s home contest against the non-division and non-playoff Atlanta Thrashers could be overlooked.
However, coming off a confidence-building road win against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday, the Flyers have their sights set on taking two points from Atlanta, while regaining some home ice swagger.
After falling on the road to the Boston Bruins, 7-5, just one night prior, the Flyers were looking for more “jam” against the competitive Atlanta Thrashers.
And Sean O’Donnell stepped up and brought it.
The 39-year old veteran defenseman, who scored a beautiful goal against the Bruins, set the tempo and led by example by making two clean and violent hip checks against the Thrashers’ Rich Peverly and Evander Kane. The Flyers were able to outlast Atlanta in the third period, winning the contest, 5-2.
TSN’s Darren Dreger sent mild shock waves through the transaction-starved hockey community on Saturday, saying on his twitter that Atlanta general manager Don Waddell has approached Los Angeles, Boston, Philadelphia and Chicago, about moving the rights to bona fide super star Ilya Kovalchuk.
According to capgeek, Philly fan favorite and spirited pugilist Josh Gratton, has agreed to a one-year deal worth $600,000, with the Atlanta Thrashers.
Gratton, 26, began his career in Philadelphia in 2004, and was re-acquired from Nashville on Oct. 2008, in exchange for defenseman Tim Ramholt.
Josh started in 19 games for the Flyers in the 2008-09 season, scoring a goal, two assists and 57 penalty minutes.