Flyers

Flyers

Rust, what rust?

Coming out of the bye and All-Star break, the Flyers had themselves a week, winning all four of their games.

They're now owners of the NHL's longest active win streak at seven games.

And, believe it or not, they're thinking playoffs again (see story).

Let's get into some observations:

• Should we even be surprised?

The Flyers have always had a propensity for streaks, both good and bad. This team is clearly no different.

Before winning eight of their last nine games and outscoring the opposition 32-20, the Flyers lost eight straight and were outscored 31-15.

Impressively, they've flipped a switch and a lot of credit has to go to Carter Hart. Stability in net is everything and the 20-year-old has been integral in rebuilding the Flyers' confidence.

The Flyers actually are not all that far off from their pace last season, when they finished with 98 points and snuck into the playoffs. 

Through 52 games in 2017-18, the Flyers were tied for the Eastern Conference's second wild-card spot at 24-19-9 and 57 points. This season, they're 23-23-6 with 52 points, seven back of the final playoff berth.

The problem, though, is the Flyers have given themselves little room for error.

• Oskar Lindblom is showing what he can do when he receives consistent minutes and plays with talented players.

During the seven-game winning streak, the 22-year-old winger has posted six points (three goals, three assists) and a plus-6 rating, while playing an average of 16:09 per game.

 

In his 29 games prior, he played just 10:35 a night to go with four points and no goals.

He's a young player with promise that has been put in a position to succeed and is taking advantage of it.

• There's a misperception with James van Riemsdyk that he'll coast or sort of float at times on the ice, as if he's not all-out trying.

It's simply not the case.

He talked about the style in which he plays last month:

(Alex) Ovechkin, guys like that, (Steven) Stamkos — it's not like they're necessarily blasting around, sprinting and stopping, doing all this stuff. They're kind of meandering and then they find that soft spot and everyone's like, 'How did he get there?' Well, he knows where to go and he knows how to get into the right spot when the guy who has the puck is ready to pass it, so that's what you try to learn over the course of your career. There are different things you try to watch and observe.

There's guile to his game and if you need an example of his effort, just watch the game-winning play in Saturday's 5-4 OT victory over the Oilers.

"Some unbelievable plays by JVR winning battles and setting me up there," Nolan Patrick said, "so obviously a lot of credit to him."

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