FIVE REASONS THE FLYERS LOST

1. MASON INJURY
Goalie Steve Mason was so good in three of his fours starts, two of them victories, that you can argue the Flyers would be still playing if he hadn’t missed the start of the series due to a concussion. Backup Ray Emery wound up starting the first three games, losing two of them while posting a 3.49 goals-against average and .888 save percentage. Mason’s numbers were far superior: 1.97 GAA, .939 save percentage.

2. GIROUX DIDN’T PLAY LIKE SUPERSTAR
Claude Giroux (photo above), named a Hart Trophy finalist on Wednesday, was a disappointment against the Rangers despite leading the Flyers with six playoff points. In the Flyers’ four losses, he had just one goal and one assist. When the Flyers last won a playoff series, Giroux was the best player in a 2012 first-round upset of Pittsburgh with six goals and 14 points in six games. In that series, he had one monster game with three goals and three assists. The Flyers needed Giroux to win them a game in these playoffs. Had he done it once, they’d be in Pittsburgh preparing for another Flyers-Penguins series.

3. SUPPORT CAST WASN’T SUPPORTIVE
While Giroux contributed just two goals, one of them an empty-netter, the Flyers’ six other 20-goal scorers combined for just eight goals in seven games, three of them coming from Wayne Simmonds in Game 6. Simmonds didn’t do much in the other six games besides icing Game 2 with an empty-net goal. Scott Hartnell and Brayden Schenn were big disappointments in the series, as neither scored a goal. Matt Read and Vinny Lecavalier managed just one apiece. Jakub Voracek played very well in the series, but scored just twice.

4. ONE COMPLETE GAME
The Flyers looked great in their 5-2 Game 6 romp, but other than that played just a few strong periods the entire series. They turned the puck over way too much, struggled with their breakouts and couldn’t get their forechecking game going. They also took a lot of bad penalties, although they were fortunate there because their penalty killing was so good killing off the Rangers’ final 21 power plays. Flyers coach Craig Berube said before Game 7 that he expected his team to play like it did in Game 6 throughout the series. It didn’t come close.

5. ROUGH SERIES FOR NO. 1 DEFENSE PAIR
Veteran blueliners Kimmo Timonen and Braydon Coburn were a pretty solid top pair in the regular season. Against the Rangers, they constantly were out of position and turning over the puck. Timonen, who may retire, looked slow and old, and he contributed next to nothing offensively. Coburn didn’t use his size and was a turnover machine while finishing with a team-worse minus-6.

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