Originally written on Philly Sports World  |  Last updated 10/29/14

DENVER - NOVEMBER 04: Goalie Ilya Bryzgalov #30 of the Phoenix Coyotes looks on during a break in the action against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on November 4, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

As the Eastern Conference Quarterfinal match between the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins shifts back to the Consol Energy Center for tonight’s game, the pressure to come out and finish the series off intensifies for the Flyers.

After a demoralizing 10-3 loss the other night that saw coach Peter Laviolette yank Ilya Bryzgalov, the talk in the city has focused on what to do about the goaltender. Sound familiar?

Ironically, the Flyers called up some reserves on Tuesday. Among them was the man who authored an improbable run to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2010. That man, Michael Leighton, has been largely forgotten about for the past two seasons, except for his appearance in the playoffs last year. Will Michael Leighton come into play this season? Not very likely.

What about Bob? Sergei Bobrovsky was once thought of as the goalie of the future here. After Wednesday night, he is just another horse on the goalie-go-round that has been Flyers hockey for the past 15 years. He won’t be the guy either.

In this installment of Who’s the Goalie, the answer is a definite one. At least you can say that this year. In the past it seemed like decisions on who would start in goal were made with a dartboard. Yes, Ilya Bryzgalov will be the man between the pipes whether you like him or you don’t. The Flyers have invested $51 million and 9 years into this man, and I can assure you that they won’t pull the plug on him just yet. In essence, they can’t. Barring injury, of course.

The questions surrounding Bryz are many. His performance in this playoff series has been a far cry from what he was in March, and there is a nervousness in the air.

You can’t forget that Bryzgalov is playing with a chip fracture in his right foot. Judging by his slowness in moving from side-to-side on Wednesday night, it may be bothering him more than he and the Flyers are willing to admit. Add to that a report from Howard Eskin that said Bryzgalov sustained a hip injury in Game 4, and there is genuine cause for alarm.

The Flyers refuted the Eskin story, but let’s not forget that they have not always been the most forthcoming when it comes to injury. In hockey, you give no advantage to your opponent. Admitting injury is admitting weakness. The Flyers will do neither.

It is a major concern.

It is also a minor miracle that a team with a star goaltender that is boasting a 4.95 GAA and a .844 save percentage is up 3-1 in any series. If the Flyers are going to advance deeper into the Stanley Cup Playoffs or even out of this series, they will need Bryz to be better.

That’s not letting the rest of the team off of the hook, their play has been pretty putrid in their own end. They too will have to be better if the Flyers are to make a deep Cup run.

Tonight, in a pivotal game 5 in Puttsburgh, where the Flyers have had so much success, all eyes will be on Ilya Bryzgalov.

Similar Posts:

  • UPDATED – Bryzgalov “Limping Badly” After Loss to Tampa Bay?
  • What Bryzgalov’s Injury Means for the Flyers
  • Bryzgalov and Flyers Getting Their Act Together at the Right Time?
  • Bryzgalov Returns for Flyers
  • Bryz Is NHL’s First Star

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao close to deal for fight

TJ Lang: Suh wanted to fight me after stepping on Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Hernandez jurors allowed to watch Super Bowl

Tiger misses cut: ‘I’m only doing this so I won’t get fined’

Roger Goodell grilled on Deflategate during presser


Rex Ryan: Seahawks need to ‘take the air out of the football’

J.J. Watt buys cabin in the middle of nowhere to train

Six teams have done background work on Peterson

NBA set to earn $700M through streaming deal in China

Wade Phillips is the best coordinator hire this offseason

Bill Belichick gives understated scouting report of Tom Brady

WATCH: Jimmy Butler throws down half-court alley-oop

President Obama zings Patriots over Deflate-gate

Each major conference's Player Of The Year candidates

Super Bowl XLIX preview and predictions: Patriots-Seahawks

49 Stops to Super Bowl XLIX

Most unexpected MLB free agent signings of past 10 years

Five most villainous Super Bowls of all time

Super Bowl ad focuses on acceptance of gay athletes

Foster says UT boosters paid him $40-50K while in college

Ranking the repeat Super Bowl champions

Eric Decker to Sherman: Time your conception a little better

Could Katy Perry and Russell Wilson be dating?

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Obama zings Pats over Deflate-gate

Each major conference's POY candidates

Super Bowl XLIX preview and predictions: Patriots vs. Seahawks

The 13 things we want to see in Super Bowl XLIX

49 Stops to Super Bowl XLIX

Tiger Woods, misses cut: ‘I’m only doing this so I won’t get fined’

Ranking the repeat SB champions

Roger Goodell grilled on Deflategate

Katy Perry, Russell Wilson dating?

Rex Ryan has advice for Seahawks

Super Bowl: Things you can't control

LeBron and the Cavs are ready to make a run

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.