We all had a good chuckle about Ilya Bryzgalov calling himself everything short of dinglenuts after last night’s game, but I’m pretty sure what he did served a purpose too.

When a player on your team is playing poorly, you know it. You rely on your teammates too much in hockey for a guy play like dogmeat for very long and have it go unnoticed.

That’s partly why Ilya Bryzgalov stepping and saying what his teammates are thinking is a good thing for the Flyers.

When I played, I appreciated nothing more than reading a teammate’s quote in the paper where he owned his bad play. Knowing that, I tried to do the same. If you can get a coach to acknowledge his off games, you’ve got one hell of an accountable team.

Like so many other things in life, part of solving a problem is acknowledging that there is one. Doing what Bryzgalov did (or at least a more low-key version of it) avoids anyone having to plan some awkward intervention. It’s no fun calling out your teammates.

Bryz knows things aren’t going how they should be, and he intends to be better.

On top of that, he wisely took the pen out of the hands of journalists. Eventually, someone was going to write about Bryz playing horribly, but this way he gets to dictate exactly what the articles say (“I’m terrible” oughtta get the job done). What could you write that would go beyond what he says in the interview below?

Here are the videos from last night’s awesome Jets/Flyers debacle - first, the highlights of the 9-8 game, followed by Bryzgalov’s interview. It’s worth noting that Bryz was only in for the final four goals (on ten shots, though), while Sergei Bobrovsky gave up the other five.

I can’t be the only one who loves seeing a goalie repeatedly smash his stick on the post and crossbar when he lets in a stoppable shot, can I? Good show of emotion.

The best three lines?

When you have terrible goalies, it’s no surprise there are so many goals.

I’m sure Bobrovsky was like “dude, really? You gotta lump me in with that statement?”

If you throw a ball instead of a puck, I’m not going to stop it.

Beach? Bowling? Ping Pong?

I’m lost in the woods right now.

Damn. Bleak.

There’s something endearing about self-awareness, but Bryzgalov takes it to the next level. What’s so wrong with admitting you’re low on confidence? Why don’t we see this more?

Hopefully he find some and gets it back together. You have to root for anyone who can put an interview like that together.

Comments (3)

  1. The slump in Bryz’s shoulders after he lets in the final goal communicates as much as the interview. Poor guy; makes me want to buy him a puppy. But what’s the line between accountability and the Slough of Despond? Accountability is productive; I’m not sure despair is.

  2. I would like to once again thank the Flyers for trading Richards in order to clear the cap space needed to sign Bryz and solve their goaltending issues. It obviously was a brilliant plan.

  3. Bryz has the hockey version of The Yips.

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