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Jack McCaffery is the lead sports columnist for the Daily Times and He has spent several decades covering everything from the Phillies, Eagles, Flyers and Sixers, to college hoops, to high school sports in Delco.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Hakstol: Flyers playing 'for' not just in front of fans

Dave Hakstol met with the press outside the Flyers' locker room before Game 3 of a playoff series with the Washington Capitals.

This was the conversation:

Your team had a high volume of shots in the last game, but after looking at the film, were they good shots?

“Yeah. We had good quality. We had good quality and obviously we need to get a little bit more.”

Good traffic in front of Holtby?

“We can do a little bit better. That's one of the things we can do a little bit better. Yep.”

Claude Giroux has been saying that scoring first would be a momentum-booster. Thoughts?

“Well, I think it's always important in a hockey game. Tonight, I think the way we start in the first 10 minutes is more important than who scores the first goal necessarily.”

When you look at the power play, is it more puck luck, just not bouncing the right way?

“You never really rest on that. I think there are certain nights when, yeah, the goaltender is just a little bit better and the puck doesn't bounce your way. But there's always things that you can look at, address and try to do a little bit better. I thought we had some good looks. Not thought. I know we did. We had some good looks. But again, much the same as five-on-five, we've got to do a little bit better and find a way to get one in the back of the net.”
When the puck is not going in, can it take momentum away from the group?

“It can if you have a poor power play. If you're back on your heels it can. But I didn't feel that way at all in Game No. 2. That wasn't a factor.”

For the last two months, Flyers were very good at home. The difference?

“We've been pretty good at home or on the road. I don't know that it's really mattered to this group. It's always been a 'next up' mentality. We've had some good nights and have been able to come back the next day and play well. We've had some tough losses. We've been able to put that on the shelf and come back the next day and play well whether or not it's at home or on the road.

“I know our group is excited to play at home. I think everybody is. You hope you have a little bit extra boost. I said a little yesterday, you don't just play in front of, you are playing for your fans a little bit too. So I think that always gives you a little bit extra.”


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