By Harry Allison
I know, I know.
It’s only the preseason.
And the Flyers sent their “B” team up to the Garden to play the New York Rangers.
But this was the first time Philly was playing New York, the Stanley Cup finalists, after their pulsating seven-game Rangers won in last year’s playoffs.
Shouldn’t we have expected more than a 6-3 blowout by the Broadway Blues?
“We have to check better,” coach Craig Berube admitted after his youthful skaters allowed 37 shots on a defenseless Steve Mason. “You can’t play river hockey in this league, you have to check. That’s the bottom line.”
Braydon Coburn and Andrew MacDonald were the only veteran defensemen in the lineup but Berube wants to see the entire corps up its game.
“They have to turn it on, turn it up, play better,” the coach said. “But it’s just not on them, we have to play a better team game.”
The Flyers were 1-5-1 in the preseason last year and then opened the regular campaign 1-7.
Philly is 2-3-1 heading into its final two games and would like to avoid starting the season on a four-game losing streak coming out of the preseason.
“I don’t see the same thing (as 2013) Berube said. “We’ve played some good preseason games (wins over Washington and New Jersey). And we have two more left to get it going.
“It was a real young lineup in there tonight and some of them impressed me.”
Mason said he could have done better.
“It’s tough, these preseason games, you have different lineups,” Mason said. “You have to treat this as a regular-season game because you can’t have that kind of effort. Tonight, I have to be better.”
Taylor Leier, Jason Akeson and Shayne Gostisbehere scored for the Flyers, who play the Rangers again tonight at the Wells Fargo Center.