The Philadelphia Flyers are happy to be home after a long six-game holiday road trip. The 'Bullies' host the Montreal Canadiens at the Wells Fargo Center starting at 7:30 p.m. EST on Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia.
Craig Berube's steadying influence continues to be the story this season and surely helped to enable the highly-impressive 5-1 road trip record. Last night's wild 3-2 overtime finish against the New Jersey Devils was the latest in a series of affirming ice moments that were rarely seen last season.
Philadelphia's 48 points (22-17-4) represent sole possession of second-place in the very competitive Metropolitan Division, where the Pittsburgh Penguins currently occupy the 60-plus point penthouse.
Berube's earlier-than-expected elevation to the team's top bench job caught everyone by surprise in early October to be sure. But, general manager Paul Holmgren's quick decision looks great now.
The organization's choice to also stick with its high-priced roster, which deeply underperformed through early November, was also wise. Past indecision and numerous reactionary moves through the years have often doomed the Flyers to sporadic regular seasons and blunted playoff runs.
As of early January, the orange and black has shown the potential to produce a good hockey year. But, the playoff drive has yet to move into high gear.