Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Halak, Canadiens stumble in 3-0 loss to Flyers

Image (1) Hahalak-thumb-250x328-11793.jpg for post 1671

Final - Philadelphia Flyers 3, Montreal Canadiens 0

Flyers lead series 2-0

I know that a lot of attention now is going to turn on Jaroslav Halak, and how his struggles are costing the Canadiens after his heroics got them to this point. While Halak has certainly looked far from the goaltender we saw in the first two rounds (and actually, sometimes we did see this side of him) the rest of the team hasn’t looked much better.

After cashing in on their underdog roles against the Capitals and Penguins, the Canadiens entered this series as not exactly the favorites but far from a team that many thought didn’t have a chance. For the first time in the playoffs they were a team with the pressure on their shoulders, with a crazed fan base that was sniffing the Stanley Cup finals and demanding success.

After two games, they have come nowhere near living up to expectations.

The Flyers continue to play like a confident team with no pressure and after surviving an early push by the Habs used a boring, but solid, 3-0 win to go up on the Canadiens 2-0 in the series.

Michael Leighton became the first Flyers goaltender since Bernie Parent in 1975 to have back-to-back shutouts in the playoffs, as he easily outplayed Halak for the second straight game. He’s looking confident and fresh (as he should be) and the goaltending questions the Flyers faced after Brian Boucher was lost to injury have been answered.

On the other end, Halak continued his trend of looking a bit worn down after a big series and he was far from the confident and challenging goaltender we saw against the Capitals and Penguins. Of course, this happened at the start of the series against the Penguins yet it didn’t carry over to the second game. Now, the Habs are faced with the question of just what to do with their miracle goaltender, who looked even shakier in net as the game progressed.

With the Habs trailing 2-0 in the third, and his doing at least trying to come back in the game, Halak allowed a very weak far side goal to Ville Leino, barely reacting to the shot. Whether he didn’t see it, or just misplayed the shot, it was a troubling trend to see as the game progressed and Halak constantly failed to show the energetic and positionally sound goaltending that was so successful before.

The series now heads back to Montreal, where a rabid Bell Center is sure to do all they can to give their home team the support they need to crawl back into the series.