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Points by Ben Simmons during Game 3 victory over Nets

Reasons the Flyers lost

Posted by Eric Fisher On April 23

Why were the Flyers eliminated by the Penguins? PhillyPhanatics.com provides the Top 10 reasons for their first-round exit.

10. The officiating  This is far from the top of the list, and it may sound like sour grapes, but the Flyers won Game 5 despite lopsided officiating and were hurt by silent whistles toward the end of Game 6. The Flyers had more phantom penalties called against them during Game 5 than actual penalties assessed to the Penguins. In Game 6, with the Flyers trailing 5-4, Kris Letang got away with a two-hand swing at Sean Couturier, taking his legs out from under him, which led directly to the Penguins’ 6th goal. This was followed during the final 7 minutes by a missed icing call and a non-call on a blatant cross-check to Couturier at center ice. The Flyers didn’t lose because of the officiating, but it took away an opportunity for the Flyers to redeem themselves.

9. Injuries The Penguins also had injuries to key players, but having the best two-way forward (Sean Couturier) and defenseman (Ivan Provorov) playing Game 6 with significant injuries, after Couturier was sidelined for Game 4 and played hurt during Game 5, certainly affected the Flyers. Perhaps we should throw Wayne Simmonds, who many suspected is injured, in this category as well.

8. Radko Gudas It’s unfair to define Gudas’ entire series by his costly turnovers in Game 6 — he was a minus-1 for the series and stuck up for Claude Giroux in Game 6 — but it wouldn’t be right to leave those game-changing blunders out, either.

7. The power play The Flyers were 2 for 21 on the power play. That’s not going to get the job done against any team, let alone the Penguins.

6. Shayne Gostisbehere The winner of the Barry Ashbee Award as the Flyers’ top defenseman was a minus-8 for the series and produced just one goal and 0 assists.

5. Goaltending It was unrealistic to think the Flyers would have the edge in goaltending against the Penguins’ Matt Murray, but the Flyers trio of Brian Elliott, Michal Neuvirth and Petr Mrazek could have at least made it close.

4. Top players disappear Claude Giroux, Jakub Voracek and Wayne Simmonds combined for 1 goal in 6 games.

3. Giroux an imperfect 10 Claude Giroux gets his own spot on the list. Not only did the Flyers’ regular-season MVP — and a contender for NHL MVP — score just one goal during the series, but he was a minus-10.

2.  Turnovers The Flyers turned the puck over much too often in the neutral zone and their defensive zone.

1. Penguins are better The Penguins have Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin at the top of their lineup. Phil Kessel, Patric Hornqvist and Jake Guentzel highlight the next level of stars. The Penguins have deep lines, a better-than-expected defense and Matt Murray in goal.

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