Four-for-Four: The Claude Giroux Is Better Than You Edition

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Mar 5, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Flyers center Claude Giroux (28) celebrates his goal with right wing Jakub Voracek (93) and left wing Scott Hartnell (19) against the Washington Capitals during the second period at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports


Giroux has become one of the more GIF-worthy athletes in the city. He spares very little when it comes to emphatic celebrations such as this one, and tends to be on camera a lot. He also is constantly chirping at the opposition which, given his slightish stature and childish look, often provides more comedic value.


Craig Berube might not be the innovator that Chip Kelly is or the lovable figure that Brett Brown is, but the dude wins. The Flyers are 33-21-6 with ‘Chief’ at the helm, and that takes into account the fact that the Flyers had to undergo substantial conditioning work and philosophy changes.

Peter Laviolette was a figure that was much easier to latch onto. He butted heads with other coaches, he spoke with fire in his voice, and he insisted upon an aggressive uptempo style that provided exciting play. That being said, Laviolette should have never coached a game this season. From the mouths of the owner even, the Flyers were in awful shape at the beginning of the season and a lot of that goes on the head coach. Berube, who served as one of Lavy’s assistants, had to overhaul a culture all while trying to keep the team’s record afloat. For not having any time calling the shots during the preseason, the Flyers coach has done an excellent job.

In the wake of the Flyers 6-4 win over the Washington Capitals on Wednesday, Berube had some interesting things to say. Even when the team has won games with Chief behind the bench, he has often criticized the team for their sloppy play leading to costly penalties. The Flyers nearly blew a 4-0 lead to the Capitals because they gave Washington multiple power plays during the 3rd period. Yet, when Berube discussed his team’s trips to the penalty box, he took aim at a different target.

"“I didn’t like the calls in the third period, to be honest with you… “I don’t like to complain about refereeing because it’s a tough job . . . but I didn’t like the calls. You guys shouldn’t ask me another question about penalties, and I probably shouldn’t say another thing to the team about it because it doesn’t work. Does it?”"

It’s great to see Berube come to the aid of his team like this. One of the things about Chief that struck me about him over the course of his short tenure was that he rarely delivered too much praise to his team. He would give credit when it was due, but constantly kept the team’s shortcomings in the forefront. Considering all of the bad habits this team had to kick if it were going to try to contend, I believe this was intentional. Although the Flyers are a team of men and adults, there is still something to be said for gaining the praise of a head coach. The Flyers have had to really work to do so, and it looks as if they might be thawing the stone-cold Berube as their play continues to improve.



I wish Vinny could have gotten a clean fight with Erskine. Something tells me he will be playing a key role with this team if they end up making the playoffs.