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Ilya Bryzgalov admits his game isn’t quite ‘there’ yet

Dustin Brown, Ilya Bryzgalov

With the puck from the winning goal by his skate, Los Angeles Kings Dustin Brown, stands in front of Philadelphia Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov and raises his arms in celebration during the overtime period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Oct. 15, 2011, in Philadelphia. The Kings won 3-2. (AP Photo/Tom Mihalek)


The Philadelphia Flyers suffered a tough loss at the hands of the Washington Capitals, but their wild off-season experiment has largely been a success. That being said, the biggest bit of mad science still has its issues, as Ilya Bryzgalov is struggling to get his game together.

That fact hasn’t been lost on Breezy, who told Sam Carchidi that he’s still adjusting to his new team.

“I’m happy with the team overall, but not with my performance,” Bryzgalov said. “It’s still not there. Some parts of my game, I’m still trying to find.”

“Something is missing, and I cannot understand what exactly it is. I can’t explain it, but only I know what it is.”

The natural assumption is to say that he’s struggling to make it on his own after leaving the cocoon of Dave Tippett’s defensive system. That might be a questionable hypothesis when you consider the fact that Bryzgalov carried that team, though; that supposedly stout Phoenix Coyotes system allowed the third most shots per game last season.

Looking at his split stats, Bryzgalov’s most obvious problem area is the penalty kill. He allowed six goals on 35 shots during the PK, which makes for an ugly .829 save percentage. Goalies naturally struggle more shorthanded, but those stats need to improve - even if the Flyers’ penalty kill personnel isn’t what it was last season.

Bryzgalov’s numbers are outstanding at even strength, so at least he’s dealing with isolated issues at the moment. Knowing how eccentric Breezy can be, it wouldn’t be surprising if the problems he was really just talking about his pre-game meal or something totally arbitrary, though.