Great stat, but not a game-changer

He’s number one!

Which doesn’t really mean a thing as far as Flyers defenseman Andrej Meszaros is concerned.
But with the NHL season at the midway point, nobody has a better plus-minus average than the 6-foot-2-inch, 218-pounder the Flyers acquired from Tampa last summer. Through Saturday’s 2-1 win over New Jersey, the 25-year-old has been on the ice for 25 more goals scored than allowed (last night’s game at Buffalo ended too late).

While it beats the alternative, Meszaros insists this has more to do with his new team than anything he’s doing.

“It’s just a stat,” said Meszaros. “It’s a different system. My game hasn’t changed. Obviously, you don’t want to give up goals and be on the ice when you score goals. But, when you have guys scoring a lot of goals like we do and get good goaltending, it’s easier to be on the plus side.”

The fact remains that Meszaros, who cost the Flyers their second-round pick next season, was a minus-14 in Tampa last season, after scoring 26 goals and 110 points his first three seasons in Ottawa.

“At Tampa I was struggling,” admitted Meszaros, who has a goal and 13 assists this year, but has taken eight penalty minutes. “I’m feeling more comfortable in this system. I don’t have those points like I had, but that doesn’t matter. It’s all about the wins.”

Giroux an All-Star

Happy birthday, Claude Giroux!

Giroux, who turns 23 today, was selected to his first NHL All-Star Game. He was the only Flyers player selected.

“Obviously, it is pretty exciting and should be a really good experience,” Giroux said.

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