Playoff hockey is sweeping the nation but the Philadelphia Flyers are not taking part. The 2020-21 campaign will go down as one of disappointment. Is there a more cathartic way to end the season than to look back at just how bad things got? Well, if you’re into that kind of thing, here are a few of the stats that stood out from this past season.
The not so good, the bad, and the ugly
The Flyers were the only team in the NHL to allow 100+ goals at home. Anaheim ranked 31st in home wins (6 out of 28) and allowed 99 goals. The Flyers allowed 104 despite doubling Anaheim’s win total which only highlights just how bad the defense ans goaltending was.
Away from home, the Flyers ranked 14th with a record of 13-11-4. They scored 79 goals on the road, but it’s the goals conceded that hampered them once again, where they gave up 105.
Overall, they gave up a league-worst 3.52 goals per game on average despite ranking inside the top 15 when it comes to goals scored. What really puts this into perspective is an advanced analytic from Hockey-Reference that takes the actual goal differential and subtracts it from the expected goal differential. The Flyers ranked dead last with a -45 rating.
If you still want more Spain without the ‘S’, the Flyers actually ranked 6th when it came to scoring opportunities in favor of the team. They ranked 7th in high-danger scoring chances with 193. 30 of those were converted, ranking 5th in the NHL. It’s clear that Vigneault’s focus on high-efficiency efforts paid off, but giving up the third-most 5-on-5 goals of any team in the league was always going to minimize the momentum that the offense was able to create.
When it came to special teams, the Flyers ranked 27th in short-handed goals allowed, which is always good. They only scored one short-handed goal all season. We know the penalty kill was bad…so, so bad. They could only stop 71% of opposing power-plays despite constant shuffling to try and correct their penalty-killing woes.
It wasn’t all bad for the Flyers…
Before this article makes you want to listen to Radiohead for the next 3 days, let’s find some silver linings.
James van Riemsdyk ranked 10th (technically tied 5th) in power-play goals with 7.
When it came to overtime, the Flyers actually went 8-4-4, which is probably one of the lone positives we can take when it comes to W/L records this year
On January 26th, Claude Giroux passed Bob Clarke for the most games played as a captain in franchise history with 611. He later passed Bill Barber for second-most total appearances in team history. The Captain also moved to third place in All-time points scored for the franchise with 850 after scoring twice within 22 seconds in a big win over the Devils.
Joel Farabee created quite a buzz during his second season with the Flyers. He became the third Flyer in team history to record a regular-season hat-trick before turning 21-years-old, scoring three of the four goals that won the Flyers an overtime clash against the Islanders.
Brian Elliott’s tenure as a Flyers goaltender may be coming to an end, but he reached his 500th NHL appearance while wearing the infamous orange jersey. It’s a shame the team lost that game 7-3 to Pittsburgh, but it’s the thought that counts…right?
Photo Credit: Alex McIntyre