Practice notebook: Flyers hit the ice with optimism following last night’s explosive win

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The Flyers have now won two of their last three games and are looking to head into the bye week/all-star break on a high note. In preparation for tomorrow nights battle with the Bruins, the Flyers hit the ice this morning at the Flyers Skate Zone.

The lines were a complete guessing game today. Flyers forward Phil Varone was in Orange which usually resembles the first line, while Jori Lehtera was in grey, which usually resembles the second. It’s safe to say these are not how the lines will look come puck drop tomorrow night.

Before practice got underway, the Flyers announced forward, Dale Weise, had been placed on waivers. Weise, who was in the middle of his 3rd season with the Flyers finished with a total of 34 points in 152 games played (17 goals, 17 assists). It’s no doubt a weird situation considering he did take warm-ups prior to puck drop last night vs. the Wild.

In other news, James Van Riemsdyk had a maintenance day today per Flyers Head Coach Scott Gordon. Don’t forget he did take that friendly fire shot in Saturday afternoons game versus the Devils. He tallied his fourth career hat trick (second as a Flyer) last night vs. the Wild.

Anthony Stolarz was also once again out on the ice for practice this morning. He’s been out exactly a month with a lower-body injury, but by the looks of it will return soon. Towards the end of practice, the Flyers defenseman took shots from the point on him.

Last night, the Flyers switched things up on the power play going with a five-forward first unit. It consisted of Giroux, Simmonds, JVR, Couturier, and Voracek, who quarterbacked it. They ended up finishing 1/4 on the night scoring on their first opportunity when Voracek’s shot from the point was redirected by JVR past Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk.

“I don’t know if we’re going to stick with it. I thought last game we moved the puck pretty well. We had some chances and got a big goal early on in the game, but I think we can still build on that and be better”, said Couturier when asked about the five forward power play.

Flyers Head Coach Scott Gordon also liked what he saw from the five forward power play unit.

“I like the players on their natural sides. It’s what we did in Lehigh. I think it provides a different look, some things that make it a little bit harder to cover from a penalty killing standpoint”.

The Flyers are in a situation where they need to win now and they are well aware of it. They sit second to last in the NHL. Only the Ottawa Senators have fewer points than the Flyers this year (39).They only have themselves to blame for where they’re placed in the standings.

“Yeah, I mean especially at the point where we are in the season being so far behind. We need to win right now in any way”, said Couturier when asked about the final two games headed into the break.

You got a feeling of relief from Nolan Patrick this morning on the ice. He looked like he was out there laughing and having fun again. Patrick ended his 24 game goalless drought by potting two last night in the Flyers 7-4 win over the Wild.

“It’s nice to get out of a slump. It obviously weighs on you a bit mentally when you go through a slump like that. It obviously feels good to get a win and stuff like that”.

You definitely feel for Patrick who has had a rough go this season. Through 39 games this season, Patrick has scored only seven goals and tallied only eight assists for a grand total of fifteen points. I’m pretty sure no one expected Patrick to be struggling this much. Getting those two goals last night definitely took some pressure off of him.

The Flyers are back in action tomorrow night vs. the Bruins. They will go for their third straight win on home ice. The Bruins defeated the Flyers in their only matchup this season by a final score of 3-0. Puck Drop is at 7:30PM.

As always, Lets Go Flyers!