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Giroux: Bryzgalov’s our best player right now

Feb 5, 2013, 4:42 PM EDT

Bryzgalov Giroux

When the topic of “who’s the best Flyer?” comes up, answers usually revolve around one name — Claude Giroux.

Yet it’s Giroux himself who thinks someone else is currently deserving of that title:

Ilya Bryzgalov.

“Right now, he’s our best player,” Giroux told the Philadelphia Inquirer on Tuesday.

While Bryzgalov’s record leaves something to be desired — he’s just 3-5 thus far — his other numbers are solid.

He’s boasting a 2.40 GAA and .920 save percentage, the latter being most impressive given he’s faced the fifth-most shots in the NHL this season (238).

Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette praised Bryzgalov’s consistency this season and alternate captain Daniel Briere says if the Russian netminder can keep it up, the Flyers’ struggles won’t last much longer.

“If he keeps playing this way,” Briere said, “we’ll be a very dangerous team.”

  1. sheckyrimshot - Feb 5, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    i cant help but interpret briere’s quote as “if we can keep this nutbar from having a mental meltdown while the rest of us get our $#]+ together, we’ll be a very dangerous team.”

  2. phillyphanatic77 - Feb 5, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    I think most observers would agree. And although I want him to continue being consistent I’d like Giroux to get back to being the top player. He finally broke out of his slump against Carolina and I believe that trend will continue. He’s had to adjust to teams constantly disrupting him while also working on the fly with many different linemates. With McGinn-Giroux-Briere building chemistry the production should continue.

    • rasoff777 - Feb 5, 2013 at 7:20 PM

      He also has the added responsibility as a captain. I think they should have waited one year to make him captain.

  3. clod jeer-roo - Feb 5, 2013 at 5:17 PM

    We all pitched in and got him a Vermont Teddybear today.

    • supercoop8 - Feb 5, 2013 at 10:48 PM

      For some reason this is the funniest thing Ive read all day

  4. broadstbully33 - Feb 5, 2013 at 5:22 PM

    No argument there.

  5. philly4lyfe - Feb 5, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    i somewhat find myself almost rooting against him because if his contract. your not going to get a better chance than this offseason to unload that massive contract via a buyout. aftter how brutally inconsistent he was last year, were going to be stuck wuth him for another 8 years or something close to that as he’s going into his 40’s. how much better do you really think he’ll get as he gets older? I say abandon ship while you can and clear lots of cap space in the process.

  6. broadstbully33 - Feb 5, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    And who do you replace him with? Lieghton? Boucher?

  7. hockeyfan28 - Feb 5, 2013 at 6:26 PM

    It’s not like with the guys pedigree from his days in Anaheim and Phoenix he’s not capable of standing on his head and
    a team riding the guy for a deep playoff run if his deal was 5 years it would be perfect but with 7 years left on his deal after this year man that is a tough decision to make

  8. broadstbully33 - Feb 5, 2013 at 6:32 PM

    I agree it is a real tough call esp since how well he has been playing so far this year.

  9. aclassyguyfromaclassytown - Feb 5, 2013 at 7:39 PM

    I’m a Flyers fan, but I find it funny that Brierre is saying they’d be that dangerous if he keeps playing like he’s playing,but meanwhile he’s been playing that well already and they haven’t been all that dangerous of a team so far this year. And if Simmonds was still in the lineup right now I’d say he was just above Bryz in the rankings of best player on the team. He had been playing real well before getting knocked out.

  10. philly4lyfe - Feb 5, 2013 at 8:25 PM

    Boucher or Leighton arent long term answers. youd have to go outside via either a trade or free agency for a quality, more long term replacement. and they woukd definitely have to look into all of their options before pulling the trigger on buying him out for sure. I just think its better for the club long term. I didnt even ger into his inconsistent mental health state.

  11. philly4lyfe - Feb 5, 2013 at 8:26 PM

    and thats why I find myself semi routing against him. itd make the decision that much easier.

  12. broadstbully33 - Feb 5, 2013 at 8:59 PM

    Lieghton is no answer… And to get a quality goalie u have to trade for him and I don’t see us getting a top 10 goalie without losing schenn or couts an it’s not worth it IMO

  13. jpk6044 - Feb 5, 2013 at 10:50 PM

    Bryz is the best player on the Flyers?Ummm…Duh!

  14. Jack Bauer 24 - Feb 5, 2013 at 10:56 PM

    Give him time , he’ll regress back to the Bryz of last Winter

  15. matthewmacisaac - Feb 5, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    Bryz hasn’t been as bad as people make him out to be. Last year his numbers were close to his career averages. The difference last year is that most people in Phoenix don’t even know that there is a hockey team there so no one interviews the goalie with the odd world views. He has definitely been the best player out there, as he was in the Devils series last year, the difference being the Flyers have had a few games where they have played some team defense (both Ranger games and tonight’s Tampa game). If they play defense like that on a consistent basis, they will really appreciate his skill.

    • hockeyfan28 - Feb 6, 2013 at 2:26 AM

      The guy has a 955 save percentage and their 4-6 if he’s the Bryz of last year they may have 1 win…this year he looks so calm of there maybe he did just need a year to adjust to his new surroundings and what it’s like to play in a city where hockey really means something.

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