First and foremost, some solid practices would do wonders.
This team needs to learn to be calm, poised and relaxed with the puck. Whether it's a strong forecheck or an aggressive penalty killing unit, this team folds under pressure. (same as last year which is very concerning and adds weight to the argument that Lavy's methods are suspect and perhaps falling on deaf ears)
Outside of Kimmo and "G", the rest of both units seizes up and hurries the pass or the shot.
I'll add the notion about an identity crisis on the PP. On one hand, they're employing the twin towers method (Harts/Knuble & Simmer) whereby you've got this dual big body presence directly in front of the goalie but rather than load up with bombs from the point and then fight and overwhelm the crease area for garbage goals, we're staying to the outside and passing the puck between the remaining 3 players looking for the perfect pass or odd man situation.
The PP, to my eyes at least, looks overtly telegraphed and regimented. For all the talk about letting creative players like "G" play, I see none of it on our PP's. Although I'm still glad they didn't resign him, Jagr's ability to protect/shield the puck from defenders is glaringly absent right now.
I am a little tired of watching G and Timonen play catch and then one (G mostly) messing up a pass or shooting into a defenders shins. Having said that, they don't have Hartnell moving from closer to the net to the slot for the quick shot. Also, if Jake was a shooting threat, Giroux and Timonen would have more space.
Jake on the other point is is not great. Foster can't be worst than Lilja on D, so I would prefer he plays in Jake's spot with Jake moving to the second unit. He has not been great, but the second unit has been horrible.
Jake might be able to control the puck on the right side (or right back) as Giroux does the left (minus the shooting threat). They need someone in front, so Knuble works. I don't really know where Couturier should be outside of the point. B.Schenn? He could try to do what Hartnell does, but his play has been so bad.
(Desperation! The D have no offense anyway, Couturier is D conscious and Jake has speed to recover)
This can't be stated enough. It's laughable how little of a threat he is to score from the half wall opposite of Giroux. Teams don't even challenge him anymore.
FTR I like jake. However. He fumbles EVERY pass, never shoots, makes terrible passes and turns the puck over. Hell as bad as people claim timonen has been, he's bailed out jake so many times this year breaking up breakaways...
they need to alter or get rid of the three-men-high thing. while the opposing penalty kills are getting comfy, the flyers would do good to move the puck around the boards a little bit more and look for plays that aren't a giroux one-timer from the top of the circle with two guys in front. it's a good play when it works but it's not getting through right now. move the puck around, try to setup plays at the back door, be hungrier on rebounds. when hartnell is back and briere's more in the swing of things we might actually have 2 decent units and we can do some damage.