3 on 3 for the week of 1.15.2012

Welcome to this week’s 3-on-3, where we look back on the week that was for the Philadelphia Flyers. The Orange and Black had a busy week with four games, losing the bookends but still managing two wins in regulation to capture four points, bringing their season total to 56 points, good enough for fourth place in the Eastern Conference. Let’s get to this week’s 3″ Hot” and 3 “Not”:

3″Hot”:

  1. Sean Couturier: The 19-year-old first-round draft pick is having a very good rookie season and last week was the best of his young career. Showing no ill effects from the freak head injury that kept him out of the lineup a couple weeks back, “Cooter” scored four goals and added an assist for five points in four games. His defensive responsibility and awareness is  uncommon for such a young player and his shot is very accurate. I would expect to see Sean shooting more now that we see what he can do offensively.
  2. Sergei Bobrovsky: The young Russian netminder won both of his starts last week, allowing only three goals in two games while facing 71 shots against. Bob’s goals-against average is 2.42 good enough for 17th in the NHL and his save percentage of .921 is the 13th best in all of hockey. As long as he is playing this well, I expect Bobrovsky to get plenty of starts while Ilya Bryzgalov struggles.
  3. Wayne Simmonds: “Simmer” had a solid week with two goals and two assists for four points in four games, raising his season total to 23 points. He continues to work down low and score those “greasy” goals that good teams find a way to score.

Honorable mention: Matt Read: Read had another solid week, potting a goal and three assists for four points and was a plus-4 as well. He is fifth on the team in scoring with 27 points and is tied for fourth in plus/minus at a plus-10.

3″Not”:

1,2 and 3:The G Unit line: Over the last four games Claude Giroux, Jaromir Jagr and Scott Hartnell recorded just two points and are a combined minus-12. Luckily, other players have stepped up in the scoring department, but this unit must be better defensively if they aren’t scoring. This is hopefully just a small blip on the radar, as this line has carried the Flyers most of the year. If they are going to have long term success, this line must be at least even every night or the Flyers will be in trouble.

Dishonorable mention: Ilya Bryzgalov: “Bryz” had a rough go of it, losing both of his starts last week. He allowed eight goals on 61 shots in two games and his 3.07 GAA is 42th best in the NHL along with his 43rd best save percentage of .891. This not all his fault, but too many strange bounces and weird deflections have found their way past him for it to be chalked up to an anomaly. He is getting paid to be a elite-level goaltender, so he needs to start playing like one.

That’s all for this week’s 3- on- 3, join me next week when we look back at two home games against the Wild and Islanders and a Saturday afternoon matinee against the Devils in Newark.