Ian Laperriere served as the bench boss and will again on Tuesday when the Flyers visit the Buffalo Sabres. Chuck Fletcher constructed the lineup and will for the next two preseason games. Up top, next to the rest of the brain trust in Philadelphia, was John Tortorella. He watched from above, getting a birds-eye view of everything on the ice.
In a winning effort, the Flyers established confidence in areas of their game. Chemistry, starting from the 2022 Rookie Series, maintained against the Boston Bruins. The Cates Brothers were a focal point throughout these camps, standing out as expected.
A first impression of the 2022-2023 season is in the books. That and more in the preseason version of Reese’s Remarks:
Philadelphia couldn’t keep an opponent out of the back of the net on the penalty kill during the 2021-2022 preseason. Already, there is an improvement to discuss.
No team wants to kill six penalties, but the Flyers were up to the challenge. A perfect 6/6 made for an incredible performance. Laperriere credited stellar goaltending between Felix Sandstrom (17/17) and Troy Grosenick (14/15,) two goaltenders vying for the 2G role behind Carter Hart, for being the backbone of a strong penalty kill:
“I said for years, the goaltender needs to be the best penalty killer, and they were tonight.”Ian Laperriere; 9/24/2022
During the first period, Philadelphia disrupted the Bruins’ attack in transition. Boston didn’t enter the Flyers’ defensive zone cleanly often. Four penalties in one period put the heat on Sandstrom early, but killing a two-man advantage shifted the momentum in favor of the home team. After the opening twenty minutes, Philadelphia became the more disciplined team.
Have Your Cates and Eat It
How about Noah and Jackson Cates!?
The Cates Brothers occupied a line with Tyson Foerster, which began during the 2022 Rookie Series versus the Rangers. On the powerplay, Noah and Foerster stuck together.
In the first period, killing a two-man advantage swung momentum in favor of the Flyers. During the second, Philadelphia had the two-man advantage and converted once. Though it’s the preseason, the special teams breathe life into the Wells Fargo Center, and it was refreshing.
Foerster shot above the slot, providing the Flyers powerplay unit with a juicy rebound. Morgan Frost made a slick move on the rebound, sweeping the puck behind him to Noah, who finished the scoring play. Noah played with Frost last season on ‘The Kids Line’ during Mike Yeo’s tenure as head coach. He credited his familiarity with Frost, building consistent chemistry:
“He’s a great player. Eyes on the back of his head. When that puck bounced to his backhand, I kinda knew he could go anywhere with it, and I kinda just tried to slide off backdoor. It was a great play by him, and luck enough, I put it in.”Noah Cates; 9/24/2022
Jackson scored the game-winner. Egor Zamula took a shot from the blue line, and Jackson deflected it for the late-game tie-breaker. Contributing both goals on the evening was a neat experience for The Cates Brothers. Additionally, Jackson lent a helping hand on the penalty kill. He spoke further about the incredible team performance:
“The PK was huge tonight. Sandy made a lot of big saves for us early. First game, I thought the PK did well; we all battled. I thought it won us the game.”Jackson Cates; 9/24/2022
Intentions were clear about what Philadelphia will aim to be in 2022-2023. Cam Atkinson put it perfectly before the 2022 Training Camp:
“Doesn’t matter who you are, where you played, how much money you make; we’re going to play the right way, we’re going to play hard. Everytime we went to an away rink, guys knew, especially with the Blue Jackets, we were coming in to play hard. We didn’t necessairly have the highest skill in the world, but you practice how you play, and you better believe we’ll be a whole different team this year for the better.”Cam Atkinson; 9/13/2022
Wade Allison and Hayden Hodgson made it hard for the Bruins. Both stepped towards two different opposing players, raising their dukes. For those keeping score at home, the Flyers swept the fight card.
First, Allison went to bat for Antoine Roussel. Connor Carrick unleashed a big hit on Roussel, garnishing the attention of his teammates. Allison did serve a ten-minute misconduct penalty that bled halfway through the second period. Laperriere did commend Allison for doing the right thing and standing up for his teammates:
“He didn’t hesitate. He went right at the guy. He thought it was a cheap hit.”Ian Laperriere; 9/24/2022
Hodgson, guilty for boarding, battled AJ Greer after a shoving match commenced.
The Philadelphia Flyers visit the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday, September 27th, 2022, at 7pm.
(Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire)