Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Islanders Defeat Flyers on the Eve of Thanksgiving

The Philadelphia Flyers failed again to win back to back games in the month of November with their 3-1 loss to the New York Islanders tonight. 

The last time Philadelphia won two games in a row was on October 21st and 24th. The Flyers had a good opportunity to change that tonight after they got off to the start they wanted scoring first early in the game; however, they were unable to create much offense for the remainder of the game. 

Claude Giroux broke open the scoring on the PowerPlay 3:59 into the game. Shayne Gostisbehere received a pass from Jake Voracek and made a nice backhand pass to the captain, who one-timed it past Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak for the 1-0 lead. 

Late in the period, the Flyers were given a PowerPlay and the chance to take a 2-0 lead into the second; instead the Islanders scored while shorthanded tying the game at one. Cal Clutterbuck blew past Voracek on a two on two. Gostisbehere stick checked him but Casey Cizikas found the puck and beat Steve Mason changing the momentum of the game. 

After the shorthanded goal, the Islanders never looked back while the Flyers looked lost. Philadelphia only picked up 10 shots in the final two periods combined while New York managed to get 27 in on Mason during that span. 

Kyle Okposo gave the Islanders their first lead 5:14 into the second period when his shot from the goal line snuck through Mason's pads, on a goal he'd like to have back. 

The Islanders bottled up the Flyers for the remainder of the game allowing only four shots against in the third period and then wrapped it up with an empty net goal from Frans Nielsen. 

The Flyers have now gone 252:40 minutes without an even strength goal (November 17th, four plus games). 
Steve Mason made 33 saves on 35 shots against. 
Colin McDonald made his Flyers debut after being recalled yesterday. He replaced the injured Sam Gagner. McDonald didn't take a shot and was even in 7:59 minutes in his NHL season debut. 
Claude Giroux, who was a -3 tonight, dropped the gloves for the first time in over three years. 
The Flyers took a season low 18 shots. 

Coach Dave Hakstol:
I thought we completed hard tonight. Pushing hard, working hard. But we didn't generate a whole lot of scoring opportunities 5 on 5. 

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will have off on Thanksgiving, and will get back into action on Black Friday at 3:30PM against the Nashville Predators.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Gostisbehere's OT Goal Helps Flyers Defeat Hurricanes on Brind'Amour Night

One of the Philadelphia Flyers long time greats, Rod Brind'Amour was entered into the Flyers Hall of Fame tonight. Therefore, it was only fitting that one of the Flyers brightest young stars scored his first game winning goal to beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2.

After the Hurricanes score two goals 8:17 minutes apart in the third period to tie the game up at two, overtime was needed. 11 seconds into the extra session, the Hurricanes were called for 'holding the stick' sending the Flyers on their fourth man advantage of the game. On the ensuing faceoff, Claude Giroux won it to Shayne Gostisbehere who passed it back and forth with Jake Voracek, then back to Giroux. Gostisbehere rotated with Voracek to an open spot in between the circles where Giroux set him up for big one-time blast and game winning goal. And for the first time since October 24th, the Flyers won at home.

Philadelphia scored the game's first two goals both coming in the second period. Brayden Schenn scored the first on the PowerPlay snapping the Flyers lengthy 167:54 shutout streak dating back to November 17th. Giroux followed that up with a two on one shorthanded goal burying Sean Couturier's rebound. 

The Oranges and Black played well outshooting the Hurricanes 29-16 in the first two periods; however, they struggled a bit in the third seeing Carolina take the shot advantage 17-6, scoring two of their own, both coming off rebounds. Victor Rask scored the first beating Michal Neuvirth, who started his first game since November 10th, at 7:58 while Brett Pesce tallied the tying goal at 16:15. 

But in the spirit of the man they were honoring, Rob Brind'Amour, the Flyers never gave up and their hard work paid off as they were able to find a way to get the victory in the end. 

Michal Neuvirth, who made his first start in six games, made 31 saves on 33 shots for his fourth win of the season. 
The Flyers went 2 for 4 on the PowerPlay tonight. It was only their second multi-PowerPlay goal game of the season. 
Claude Giroux picked up a goal and two assists tonight. It was Giroux's first three point game of the season. 
The Flyers took 167:54 in between goals spanning parts of four games and nine scoreless periods. After the streak was snapped, it took the Flyers less than five minutes to score again. 
Philadelphia went 5 for 5 on the penalty kill. They have now killed off 13 straight penalties. 
Sam Gagner left the game in the first period after being checked to the ice. His face made contact with the ice causing lacerations. He did not return. 
The Flyers also scored their first shorthanded goal of the season on Giroux's tally. 

Rod Brind'Amour:
I leave here tonight thanking the organization for including me in this great great hall of fame with such great players but wanting to thank all of you for simply making me always feel at home in this great city of Philadelphia.

Shayne Gostisbehere:
We had about ten seconds to draw up a play and I listened to the best of my ability. It wasn't exactly what we drew up but I guess I got enough of it to go in. Great play by G.

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will head to New York to face the Islanders on Wednesday. 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Senators Hand Flyers Second Straight Shutout

For the second time in as many games, the Philadelphia Flyers have been shutout. Tonight it was a 4-0 showing against the Ottawa Senators. 

Craig Anderson made 36 saves en route to his second consecutive shutout while the Senators offense stuck four times: once in the first period from Mika Zibanejad in the final minute, twice in the second from Mike Hoffman and Milan Michalek and a final in the early going in the third as their PowerPlay expired from Kyle Turris. 

The Flyers outshot their opponent for the second straight game but the problem remains: they can not score. Remaining dead last in the NHL, Philadelphia is now averaging a pitiful 1.7 goals per game, 34 in 20 games. The Flyers took 36 shots tonight and 34 shots the prior game for a total of 70 shots and zero goals. Going back six games, the Flyers have only managed to put the puck in the net seven times while being shutout thrice during that span. 

Philadelphia went 0-4 on the PowerPlay and 3 for 3 on the penalty kill. 
Steve Mason, who earned his fifth straight start, made 27 saves on 31 shots. 
Shayne Gostisbehere picked up his first minus of the season on Zibanejad's goal.
Wayne Simmonds led the Flyers with five shots. 
The Flyers have now lost 11 of their last 13 games since winning four of their first seven. 

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will look to score a goal when they host the Carolina Hurricanes on Rod Brind'Amour night. 

Friday, November 20, 2015

Sharks Top Flyers in Overtime

The Philadelphia Flyers lost in extra time for the second consecutive game after outplaying their opponent because they failed to score more goals. Following tonight's 1-0 overtime shutout loss to the San Jose Sharks, the Flyers became the lowest scoring team in the NHL. 

34 goals in 19 games is all the Flyers have been able to muster up this season. That's just 1.79 goals per game. Tonight's game was a microcosm of their season in which they played well at times outshooting the second placed Sharks 34-21, yet lost because they could not take advantage of their chances. 

The opening period wasn't a strong one for Philadelphia as it took them over six minutes to get their first shot and only took six in the entire period. They did, however, remain unscathed as Steve Mason stopped all ten shots faced. The second stanza was much better as the Flyers piled on 15 shots yet again, no goals. 

Philadelphia outshot the Sharks again in the third period but were unable to snap the scoreless tie. 

In overtime, San Jose got a two on one and took full advantage as Joonis Donskoi made a nice saucer pass over a diving Michael Del Zotto to Melker Karlsson who was finally able to get one past Mason. 

The Flyers, who have looked better over the last three games despite not getting favorable results, fall to 6-8-5 on the season. 

Philadelphia went 0 for 2 on their PowerPlay while San Jose went 0 for 4. 
It was the first time in five games that the Flyers were perfect on the penalty kill. 
Michael Del Zotto skated a team high 26:58 minutes. 
Sean Couturier and Wayne Simmonds combined for 10 shots, each taking five. 
The Flyers outshot their opponent for the first time in 12 games (October 24th). 

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to score more goals when they head to Ottawa to face the Senators on Saturday night. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Gostisbehere Scores First NHL Goal in Shootout Loss To Kings

The Philadelphia Flyers held a 2-1 lead with under a minute to go tonight when the Los Angeles Kings pulled their goalie. With 56 seconds remaining, Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin blasted a shot from the point that bounced around a hit the post. Milan Lucic found the puck and buried the rebound past a sprawling Steve Mason forcing overtime.

After a wild extra session that saw 10 shots and many chances by both squads didn't settle the game, a shootout was needed. All three Flyers were stopped by Jonathon Quick in the shootout. Anze Kopitar, the second Kings shooter following Jeff Carter who was stopped by Mason, scored with a perfect shot under the crossbar giving the LA Kings the 3-2 win. 

Philadelphia picked up 38 shots in the loss and played relatively well. They also got off to a great start taking 10 shots in the first 10 minutes of the game including a PowerPlay goal to opened the scoring. Prior to the game, Claude Giroux told rookie Shayne Gostisbehere to shoot as much as he could and he did just that. While quarterbacking the top PowerPlay unit, Gostisbehere was set up by Giroux for the onetime blast and with a 96mph slap shot, Gostisbehere deposited his first NHL goal. 

Jamie McBain responded for the Kings on their PowerPlay. McBain took a shot from the point with a screen in front that beat Mason for his first goal of the season, knotting the game up at one. 

Following a scoreless second period, Claude Giroux broke the tie at 11:11 of the third period. Jake Voracek setup Giroux in the slot who scored his sixth on the season. 
In the final eight minutes, the Kings were buzzing and ultimately outshot the Flyers 8-1 during that span, including Lucic's game tying goal. 

The Flyers, however, came alive in the overtime, getting two breakaways and at least five good chances but were just unable to finish. 

Before the game, the Flyers honored long time Flyer Simon Gagner. Gagner brought out two of his children for the ceremonial puck drop as the crowd cheered wildly for the former Flyer. 
Shayne Gostisbehere scored his first NHL goal, took four shots on net, tied for second most on the team and logged 19:40 minutes. 
Brayden Schenn, who was a healthy scratch on Saturday, was put on the top line with Giroux and Voracek tonight. Schenn picked up a career high eight shots on goal. 
Midway through the second period, it appeared as though Brayden Schenn scored; however, the goal was waived off due to 'kicking the puck' over the line. 
Steve Mason made 38 saves on 40 shots tonight. 

Simon Gagne:
"This is the best place to play hockey. I won a cup in LA but I'll always be a Flyer." 

Brayden Schenn
"I thought we played a pretty good game tonight, it was a game with two great goalies going at it. They're a great hockey team and anything can happen when it goes to a shootout."

Shayne Gostisbehere:
"It's definitely bitter sweet and always good to get your first goal but we had it there in the end but left it slip through our hands. It's a dream come true. I just wish it went out way."

Claude Giroux:
"It's disappointing, we played a good game and did a lot of good things. But overall the whole game we got better and I think if we keep playing that kind of style we'll be successful."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will host the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night. 

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Voracek Snaps Streak, Leads Flyers Past Hurricanes

At long last, Jake Voracek finally has a goal. Not only did he just score, Voracek tallied the game winner in overtime as the Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 tonight. 

Voracek, who had a career high 81 points last season, struggled mightily this season failing to score a goal in the first 16 games of the season. As the Flyers went down 2-0 in the second while only taking seven shots, it appeared his slump may continue. However, Luke Schenn stepped up simply firing a shot from the top of the circle late in the second cutting the lead to one giving the Flyers some much needed life. 

The Hurricanes got off to the start they wanted at home holding the Flyers to just three shots in the first while scoring the game's first goal. Elias Lindholm found a loose puck in front after some confusion by the Flyers after a 2 on 1, and beat Steve Mason, who made his second consecutive start tonight. 

Victor Rask extended the Hurricanes lead six minutes into the second on the PowerPlay when both the Flyers defensemen got caught behind the net. 

Prior to the game, the Flyers announced their number one defenseman, Mark Streit would miss about six weeks with a pubic plate detachment. Needing to make a call up, the Flyers moved Streit to the long term injured reserve allowing for salary cap relief. Philadelphia also moved RJ Umberger to the IR (injured reserve) so they had room for two call ups.  Therefore, this morning, the Flyers announced they recalled forward Taylor Leier and highly anticipated defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere. 

In the third period, Gostisbehere made his presence felt. The man they call Ghost made a highly skilled move at the blue line leaving a Hurricane in the dust and went in on goal. Gostisbehere ripped a shot on goal that Wayne Simmonds deflected and with 3:09 minutes remaining, it was a tie game. 

On the ensuing 3 on 3 overtime, Gostisbehere went in on a 2 on 1 with Matt Read, yet Gostisbehere's shot was blocked into the netting. On the following faceoff, Claude Giroux eventually got the puck to Michael Del Zotto who made a perfect slap-pass to Jake Voracek and he tapped it into the wide open net behind Carolina goaltender Cam Ward for game winning goal. 

The Flyers were outshot 18-7 in the first two periods. Then outshot the Hurricanes 11-3 in the third. 
Going back to last season, Voracek snapped a 19 game goalless drought, 16 games this season. 
Shayne Gostisbehere's assist was his first NHL point.
In his season debut, Gostisbehere was +1, took two shots and logged 17:21 minutes. 
In his NHL debut, Taylor Leier took one shot and registered 7:27 minutes of ice time. 
Ryan White left the game in the third period and did not return. The injury looked like a shoulder/collarbone. After the game, GM Ron Hextall provided no update only saying that White will be evaluated tomorrow.
Prior to the game, Carolina played La Marseilles, the French national anthem, to honor those who lost their lives in the senseless attacks on Paris yesterday. During the anthem, Pierre Edouard Bellemare, a native of Paris, sang along while honoring his country with a flag on his helmet. 

Pierre Edouard Bellemare:
On yesterday's attacks in Paris:
"It's terrible. Shocked. Kind of sad about what's going on. Just try to give support. I'm 100 percent sure the country will get stronger." 

Taylor Leier:
On his first NHL game:
"I was a little nervous during warm ups but settled in after the first 20 seconds of my first shift. It was a quick turnaround as me and Ghost played last night and came straight here. These guys are at the next level for a reason. Look at the Staal brothers, they're huge."

GM Ron Hextall:
On the call ups:
"I thought they we're good. Taylor got better in the third period. He's a real smart player. I liked what I saw. Ghost did tonight was Ghost does. I thought both kids did a really good job."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"I liked our second and our third. We built a little momentum then generated more in the third. [Gostisbehere] made a real good play to get that to the net. Great play by everyone involve in that play."
On the call ups:
"I though they did a good job. They didn't try to do too much. Leier made some things happen and drew a penalty. He was skating and making things happen. Ghost had a solid game and made an impact at a critical time."

Jake Voracek:  
"Yea a big win as well. We played good in the third and came back and won the game. It hit my stick and thank god it went in. I almost forgot how it feels. It's a big weight off the shoulders. It's not easy when you don't score for 17 games. Hopefully now everything gets going."
On Gostisbehere:
"What he did on the blue line was very impressive. They helped us out a lot."

Shayne Gostisbehere:
"We had to put the petal to the medal at the end and that's my comfort zone. Coaches told me it's time to do what you do. I took my chance there and I'm glad it worked out. We knew what we had to do and it was a good team effort and I was glad to go out there and do it."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to carry their momentum into Tuesday when they host the LA Kings.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Capitals Roll Past Flyers

The Philadelphia Flyers lost their second game in a row and eighth out of nine in tonight's 5-2 loss to the Washington Capitals. 

The Flyers got off to the start they wanted in both the first and second period taking a 1-0 and 2-1 lead; however, they failed to keep up that play for the remainder of the each period. Scott Laughton gave the Flyers the all important first goal on a nice shot from the top of the circle. Prior to tonight, Philadelphia had gone 5-1 when scoring first, yet now they fall to 5-2. 

TJ Oshie tied the game up midway through the first after Evgeny Kuznetsov made a nice behind the back pass from behind the net. 

Philadelphia failed to score on three PowerPlays in the period, yet did light the lamp when Claude Giroux scored on their fourth man advantage early in the second from the circle. 

Then the Flyers got into penalty trouble if their own and the Capitals took full advantage scoring twice in two attempts both coming off the stick of Jason Chimera; the first in front and the second on a deflection. 

Former Flyer draftee Justin Williams also scored for the Capitals in the period on a rebound. Washington ultimately outshot the Flyers 32-20 and closed this game out later in the third when Nicklas Backstom took advantage of an Evgeny Medvedev turnover for his sixth of the season ending the game at 5-2. 

Philadelphia held a closed door meeting following Tuesday night's 4-0 loss to Colorado and followed it up with a hard nosed practice, yet they were still unable to get it done today. 

Coach Dave Hakstol made his first coaching challenge today. Alex Ovechkin appeared to score on the PowerPlay; however, Hakstol challenged, and the play was overturned due to an offsides. 
Evgeny Medvedev returned after missing five games with an upper body injury (concussion). He replaced Brandon Manning in the lineup. 
The Flyers are 1-6-2 in their last nine games. During that nine game stretch, the Flyers have been outscored 30-14. 
Philadelphia went 1 for 4 on the PowerPlay and 1 for 3 on the penalty kill. 
Steve Mason got his first start since November 2nd. Mason made 27 saves on 32 shots. 

Ryan White:
"Disappointed is a good word. We played better but not good enough yet."

Claude Giroux:
"We had a good start and were playing the right way but you can't give a team like this many chances. We have to play sharper."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"We came out and had a good start. We competed hard. But if you make mistakes against this team it ends up in the back of your net. They took advantage of their PowerPlays. It felt like we were in the game all the way through. If we could get one we'd be right there. But we didn't make the play to do that." 

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to get out of their slump when they head to Carolina to face the Hurricanes on Saturday night.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Avalanche Hand Flyers Their First Shutout of Season

The Colorado Avalanche shutout the Philadelphia Flyers 4-0 tonight. 

The Avalanche were firing on all cylinders from the very first minute of the game. Jarome Iginla gave Colorado a lead just 57 seconds into the game, and the Avalanche never looked back. Iginla's goal came on a strange play in which he fanned on a shot attempt sending the puck bouncing slowly toward Flyers goalie Michal Neuvirth at the bottom of the circle. The puck proceeded to hop over Neuvirth's skate and sneak through his pads giving the Avalanche a 1-0 lead. 

When allowing the first goal of a game this season, the Flyers have been the worst team in the league, failing to pick up any wins in those nine games amassing an 0-6-3 record (they are 5-1 when scoring first). Tonight, that astonishing trend would continue. 

Iginla's goal came right out of the gates and along with it, the Flyers struggles. After the goal, the Flyers only picked up five shots in the rest of the period being outshot 15-7. 

Another problem for the Flyers has been giving up goals to start periods. Through the first 15 games, the Flyers have surrendered 10 goals which came in the first 90 seconds of a period. Tonight it happened twice. Iginla's was the first in the opening period, while Matt Duchene scored 25 seconds into the middle period. Nathan MacKinnon attempted a wraparound that Neuvirth stopped, but Duchene was there to bury the rebound. 

Duchene wasn't finished. 3:19 minutes later, Nick Holden made a great play at the blue line to keep the puck in, then shot it on goal. Neuvirth made the save, but again, Duchene beat the Flyers defense to the puck and buried the rebound, putting the Avalanche up 3-0 just 3:44 to start the second. 

Philadelphia's PowerPlay wasn't good, albeit they only had one, their penalty kill allowed a goal on just two chances, they were outscored 3-0 at even strength and were outshot 40-25. Nothing went right for the Flyers tonight. 

To make matters worse, Colorado extended their lead to four with that PowerPlay goal early in the third, courtesy of a wraparound from Cody McLeod. 

Following the game, the Flyers called their second closed door meeting to discuss their second largest deficit loss of the season; the last meeting came after their 7-1 loss against Florida just two games into the season. The Flyers went 4-1 in their next five games following their first closed for meeting. 

It was the first time this season the Flyers were shutout. 
It was the first time ever the Avalanche shutout the Flyers. 
Five different Avalanche took more than three shots tonight while not one Flyer did. Only two Flyers had three shots (Michael Del Zotto and Sam Gagner). 
Neuvirth, who got his fourth straight start, made 36 saves on 40 shots. 
It was the third time in the last eight games that the Flyers surrendered at least 40 shots against. 
It was the seventh straight game in which the Flyers failed to take at least 30 shots. In the previous eight games, they picked up 30+ shots in six of the eight. 

Claude Giroux: 
"We're not going to give excuses. We should be ready to come to our building and play a good game. We need to play better together, support each out there and play as a team. It's not that the guys don't care. They're proud to be a Flyer. The day we come together to play as a team is the day we start winning games." 

Ryan White:
On fans booing the Flyers off the ice:
"We're embarrassed. [The fans] are probably embarrassed, too. That's the way it goes."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"We didn’t create enough tonight. [We were] not good enough in the offensive zone."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to right the ship again on Thursday when they host the Washington Capitals. 

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Neuvirth & Flyers Shutout Jets, Snap Six Game Losing Streak

Michal Neuvirth's third shutout of the season snaps the Philadelphia Flyers six game losing streak as they defeat the Winnipeg Jets 3-0 tonight. 

Neuvirth continues to impress this season and tonight he lifted the Flyers over the Jets stopping all 28 shots faced including a few highlight reel saves in the opening period. 

Goaltending wasn't the only thing that clicked for the Flyers tonight. Philadelphia went an impressive two for five on the PowerPlay scoring the first two goals of the game on the man-advantage. 

Brayden Schenn struck first on the PowerPlay at 5:54 of the first period on a one time shot from the slot. Claude Giroux assist on Schenn's team leading fifth goal of the season. 

After a scoreless second period, Wayne Simmonds scored a huge goal for the Flyers halfway through the third. Again on the PowerPlay, Jets goalie Ondre Pavelec fell while trying to get back into position after slipping on a Jake Voracek wraparound attempt. While falling his stick got caught in the top of the net. Pavelec managed to stop Giroux's ensuing shot without his stick; however, Simmonds buried the rebound giving the Flyers a much needed insurance goal. 

The Jets made a push at the end taking six shots in the last six minutes, but Neuvirth was there to stop all of them. Matt Read iced the game with his empty net goal at 18:25. 

Neuvirth now leads the NHL in shutouts with three on the season. The last time Neuvirth had three shutouts in a season was in 2011-12 with Washington. 
Flyers went 2 for 5 on the PowerPlay and a perfect 5 for 5 on the penalty kill. 
It was the first time all season that the Flyers scored more than one PowerPlay goal in a game. 
Philadelphia has quietly been better in the penalty kill over the last four games only surrendering one goal against, killing 12 of their last 13. 
Jets outshot the Flyers 28-22. It was the first time all season that the Flyers surrendered less than 30 shots against in a game.  
Flyers finished road trip 1-3-1. 
De Zotto left the game in the second period after his skate collided with a Jets players skate. He returned later in the period.  
Claude Giroux picked up two assists while taking four shots tonight. 

"The save Neuvirth made in the first period is a confidence [boost] helping giving the start we needed. He did a good job for his teammates and his teammates did a good job in front of him."  

"That's the way we wanted to end the road trip. It's been a long tens days. It was a great team effort. The guys did a good job for a 60 minutes effort. We just played a great hockey [game] on the road.

"I think we played a solid game starting with our goaltender. We played strong in front of him and we kept it simple. We tried not to get discouraged and it payed off."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to put back to back wins together for the first time since October 24th when they host the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday night. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Flames Score in OT, Flyers Lose Sixth Straight

In the first minute of the three on three overtime, tied at one, Calgary Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau ripped a shot on Michal Neuvirth from inside the circle on a two on one. Neuvirth made his 28th save of the game; however, Mikael Backlund crashed the net and the rebound bounced off his midsection and into the net. The play was reviewed, and the goal stood giving the Calgary Flames a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Flyers tonight.  

The Flyers played a much better game than they did against the Edmonton Oilers two nights ago, but still they leave with their sixth straight defeat as they continue to look for answers. 

The Flames got on the board first 4:40 into the first period. The Flyers PowerPlay had just ended when Vinny Lecavalier made a poor pass to Brandon Manning which lead to a breakaway for Josh Jooris as he exited the penalty box. Neuvirth made a great save robbing Jooris, yet the Flyers were in disarray and were unable to corral the rebound. Jooris found it and slipped it past Neuvirth for his second of the season. 

Michael Raffl finally got off the schneid when he knotted the game up at one late in the middle period. Claude Giroux fed Raffl from the side of the net and he beat Karri Ramo from the face off dot for his elusive first goal of the season. 

Philadelphia and Calgary played to a stalemate in the final period forcing overtime. The Flyers registered the first chances of the period getting shots from Mark Streit and Wayne Simmonds. But then the Flames went the other way on an odd man rush and Backlund scored his second goal of the season, 35 seconds in, giving Calgary their fourth win of the season.

The Flyers picked up their first point in five games. They are 0-4-2 in their last six contests. 
Sean Couturier returned to action after missing six games with an upper body injury. Couturier logged 19:31 minutes of ice time in his return. 
Vinny Lecavalier played a team low 4:37 minutes. 
The Flames outshot the Flyers 30-27 tonight. Simmonds led the Flyers with 7 shots. 
Both teams went 0 for 2 on their respective PowerPlays. 

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"Every part of our game had improvement. This was a gutty road effort from us. When things aren't going well you have to find a way to push things over the hump. We earned a point tonight."

Michal Neuvirth:
"We started a little slow but as the game went on we played better. We played a great third period but it was just an unlucky goal in OT. You have to give some credit to the guys. They worked hard and that's the way we have to play on the road."

Sean Couturier:
"We played pretty well. We had our chances, just didn't capitalize. I think we can build on this and keep our legs and jump going and we'll be in a lot of hockey games and compete for a lot of points."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers continue their road trip on Saturday when they face the Winnipeg Jets. 

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Oilers Lose McDavid, Still Beat Flyers

The Edmonton Oilers lost their star player and 2015 first overall pick Connor McDavid in the second period of the Oilers 4-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers tonight. 

McDavid crashed hard into the boards following a rush up the ice in the second period. McDavid held his shoulder as he skated to the bench where he remained until the end of the period. McDavid never returned and was seen in the locker room in a sling. 

Despite being heavily outplayed, the Flyers put themselves in the position to steal this game due to Michal Neuvirth's outstanding play tonight. Heading into the third period, the Oilers were outshooting the Flyers 36-15; however, it was Philadelphia who held onto a 2-1 lead. The Flyers were able to score twice in the second period, their best, on goals from Scott Laughton, who scored 34 seconds in on a rebound, and Ryan White, who picked up his first of the season at 10:59 on a blast from the top of the circle that hit a defender. This all came after the Oilers took the lead on the PowerPlay with three seconds left in the first period on a goal from Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. 

Michal Neuvirth made 35 saves on 36 shots in the first two periods allowing the Flyers too take that lead. But the Oilers kept pushing and were finally able to beat Neuvirth on two lucky bounces less than two minutes apart. Andrej Sekera threw the puck on net which went wide and bounced back in front landing perfectly on the stick of Matt Hendricks who deposited it into the back of the net before Neuvirth could find it. 87 seconds later, Taylor Hall's shot deflected off Michael Del Zotto and past Neuvirth giving the Oilers the lead they very much deserved. 

The Flyers took five shots following Hall's go-ahead goal but were unable to to beat Anders Nilsson. Nugent-Hopkins iced the game with an empty netter handing the Flyers their fifth straight defeat. 

After the game, Oilers head coach Todd McLellan said that McDavid's injury is an upper body one that will keep him out long term. 
Neuvirth made a season high 45 saves tonight on 48 attempts. 
Edmonton took 19 shots in the first period. The Flyers took two. It took the Flyers over 53 minutes before they took their 19th shot on goal. 
The Oilers outshot the Flyers 49-22 in the game. 
The Flyers went 0 for 2 on the PowerPlay and 4 for 5 on the penalty kill.
Ryan White scored his first goal of the season.  
Teddy Purcell took a game high seven shots: more than the entire Flyers first line (4).
Evgeny Medvedev, who was a healthy scratch yesterday, was labeled today with an upper body injury. Medvedev missed tonight's game and flew back to Philadelphia prior to the game. 

Wayne Simmonds:
"We go up 2-1 and [Neuvirth] is standing on his head giving us a chance to win and we just didn't show up in the third. We didn't play our best hockey when we should have [in the third period]."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"We have to do a better job to cut down the number of shots against. They had more jump and energy in the first. I thought we did a good job in the second. We battled hard tonight, we didn't have a ton of energy but we battled hard. If I'm going to look in one spot, I'm going to look at not taking a timeout when we have a one goal lead trying to get through it at the 14 minute mark. That's not on the guys, that's on me. And that's where it starts. 

Michal Neuvirth:
Losing sucks. And we lost the hockey game. What can i say. We gotta be better. 

Ryan White:
I thought we took a step in the right direction but we still didn't get points. It's tough when you're not winning. We have to get back to playing hockey. 

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers road trip continues on Thursday when they face the Calgary Flames.

Flyers Drop Fourth Straight, Fall to Canucks

The Philadelphia Flyers lost their season high fourth game in a row tonight with a 4-1 defeat in the hands of the Vancouver Canucks. 

The Flyers have been a very good team when scoring first goal of the game. All four of the Orange and Black's victories this season have come when they have secured the game's opening goal. Tonight the Flyers were looking to get on the board early. Instead it was the Canucks who scored only 68 seconds into the game. 

Sven Baertschi made a pass through Luke Schenn at the blue line to Bo Horvat setting up a two on one. Horvat passed it under a sliding Nick Schultz to Jannik Hansen who beat Steve Mason on the backhand in tight putting the Canucks up 1-0 almost immediately. And the Flyers, who have struggled after surrendering the first tally in the past, were behind right from the get-go. 

Philadelphia picked up the pace at the end of the period which carried over into the second where Claude Giroux was able to even up the score on a potential, albeit early, 'goal of the year' candidate. Jake Voracek led Giroux with a pass as he crossed the blue line. Giroux fought off the only defender before making a highly skilled forehand to backhand roof shot that beat all star goalie Ryan Miller at 2:54. 

The Flyers were playing well and outshot the Canucks 7-2 in the first ten minutes of the second before Horvat singlehandedly got the Canucks back on the board. Horvat took the puck from the circle all the way behind the net and back out front to the slot during four on four play where he beat Mason from the slot putting the Canucks on top, ultimately for good. 

Following the goal, the Flyers fell apart and were outshot 11-3 for the remainder of the period. 

Jake Virtanen practically iced the game at 8:48 when he scored the first goal of his career. Brandon Manning made a poor pinch at the blue line leading directly to a two on one. Virtanen kept the puck and cut to the middle beating Mason on the backhand. 

In the final 12 minutes, Philadelphia was only able to muster up one shot on goal. Matt Bartkowski buried an empty netter with under a minute to play ending the game at 4-1. 

Steve Mason stopped 30 shots on 33 attempts in a losing effort. 
Philadelphia was outshot 34-28. 
The Flyers went 0 for 2 on the PowerPlay extending the PowerPlay scoreless streak to five games. 
Philadelphia was 1 for 1 on the penalty kill snapping their five game streak of allowing a PowerPlay goal against. 
Evgeny Medvedev was healthily scratched for the first time this season. 

Dave Hakstol:
"We got caught on a couple of quick transition plays early in the first five minutes. I liked the last 15 minutes of the period, everybody stayed steady on the bench. We played hard, we pushed. Either it's five on five or special teams, I thought the effort was a good effort. [We need to] stick together and comeback with a similar effort tomorrow."

Claude Giroux:
"I think there was a lot of improvement from the last few games. We generated a lot of offense, we played the way we wanted to play. The score doesn't show how much better we played. We just have to find a way to put it in the net. The room isn't happy because we lost, but we did a lot of better things tonight." 

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers road trip continues tomorrow when they face the high flying rookie Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers. 

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Flyers Drop Season High Third Straight, Lose to Sabres

The Philadelphia Flyers lost their third straight game and second in a row to the Buffalo Sabres this week with their 3-1 defeat tonight. 

After a poor performance against the New Jersey Devils last night, the Flyers were hoping for a bounce back game. Instead they once again played a slow, passionless and undisciplined game tonight. Philadelphia allowed 36 shots in the game and surrendered one goal against in each period. 

Second overall pick, Jack Eichel opened the scoring with just 36 seconds remaining in the first period for the Sabres with his impressive goal. Eichel made a nice move to cut to the middle of the ice leaving Evgeny Medvedev in the dust and beat Michal Neuvirth from between the hashmarks. Neuvirth made his return from injury reserve tonight after missing a week of action. The ex-Sabre made 33 saves in his first loss of the season. Buffalo outshot the Flyers 15-7 in the first. 

The Sabres dominance over the Flyers continued in the second as they got into penalty trouble. Buffalo outshot Philadelphia 16-7 in the second while picking up their second tally of the game on one of their four PowerPlays in the period. Ryan O'Reilly ripped a shot from the faceoff dot through a perfect screen for his fourth of the season. 

Philadelphia pick up the pace in the third period but not until Buffalo extended their lead to three. 3:12 into the period, Ryan O'Reilly fed Nicolas Deslauriers in front and he redirected the puck over Neuvirth giving the Sabres a commanding 3-0 lead. 

Following the goal, the Flyers finally picked up the pace out shooting the Sabres 12-4 while finally breaking the shutout. At 16:34, Mark Streit crashed the net and RJ Umberger found him from behind the goal helping setup Streit's third of the season. However, it was too little too late. 

After losing three in a row for the first time this season, the Flyers fell to 4-4-2. 
Sam Gagner picked up the secondary assist in Streit's goal. 
Radko Gudas played tonight as Brandon Manning sat out. 
The Flyers went 0-4 on the PowerPlay tonight. They have gone four consecutive games without a PowerPlay goal. Philadelphia has only scored four PowerPlay goals in ten games this season. 
Philadelphia allowed another PowerPlay goal against tonight going 5 for 6. They have allowed a PowerPlay goal against in five straight games. 
Matt Read took a dangerous hit from Josh Gorges in the third period. Read was pushed head first into the boards by Gorges, who was given a five minute major and game misconduct. Unfortunately for the Flyers, they only received 43 seconds of PowerPlay time as the game expired. Read skated off on his own power and appeared to be alright. 

Mark Streit:
"It was a rough game. We didn't play our game and we wanted to respond from last night but obviously we didn't do that. 
Mistakes. We had a whole lot of turnovers. Unnecessary turnovers. Disciplone is an issue too. We took too many penalties and it cost a lot of energy and momentum. You can't win hockey games like that."

Dave Hakstol:
"We haven't been able to get into any kind of rhythm in these last couple of games. We had a pretty good first period until we got to the four on four and they scored right after that. The second period we spent too much time in the box. We spent all our energy killing those penalties off tonight. And in the third our effort level and our will was good but we didn't get a push until the third period."

Jake Voracek:
"As a team I think we were slower. That's why we took some of the penalties. We got outplayed. We've got to play better. Let's be honest we didn't deserve to win the game. Too many penalties, we made too many turnovers, we lost too many one on one battles; it wasn't good enough."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to snap their longest losing streak of the season when they head to Vancouver to face the Canucks on Monday.

Flyers Prospect Update:
Ivan Provorov: 1A, +1 in Brandon's 3-2 win over Kootenay tonight. Provorov has 2G, 13A for 15 point in 15 games. 

Cooper Marody: 1G, 1A in Michigan's 5-3 win over Robert Morris. Marody has 3G, 4A for 7 points in 6 games in his freshman season.  

Nicolas Aubé-Kubel and Travis Konecny: both sat out with undisclosed injuries tonight. Aubé-Kubel has nine goals and 16 points in 14 games in the QMJHL while Konecny leads the OHL in points with 23.  

Lehigh Valley Phantoms: lost 3-2 to St John's tonight. Chris Conner picked up both goals while Nick Cousins registered an assist. Connor has eight points in eight games while Cousins has nine points. Shayne Gostisbehere, who was scoreless tonight picked up his first professional goal in the Phantoms last game. Gostisbehere has four points in eight games with the Phantoms this season.  

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Devils Score Three in Third, Defeat Flyers

The Philadelphia Flyers surrendered two goals against 64 seconds apart in the third period as they fell to the New Jersey Devils 4-1 tonight. 

Philadelphia once again got off to a slow start in the opening period as they did against Buffalo on Tuesday. The Devils were swarming while the Flyers were sloppy with the puck turning it over way too many times. Fortunately for the Flyers, who were outshot 13-6, not including two posts from the Devils, they skated to a scoreless tie after one. 

Luke Schenn, who picked up two assists against Buffalo, opened the scoring late in the middle stanza with his first of the season on a shot that snuck through Cory Schneider's pads from the side of the circle. The lead was short lived as the Flyers got into penalty trouble when Chris VandeVelde took a two minute high sticking penalty just minutes after the goal, one of five penalties the Flyers took tonight. Travis Zajac, who played under Flyers coach Dave Hakstol at North Dakota, tipped in his third of the season tying the game up at two. 

Philadelphia had a carryover PowerPlay to start the third period; however, more turnovers plagued them and they were unable to convert. Immediately after the penalty expired, Evgeny Medvedev's shot from the point was blocked by Kyle Palmieri who was off to the races. Nick Schultz was able to cut him off but not before he was able to beat Steve Mason from the top of the circle putting the Devils in the lead for the first time tonight. 

In disarray after the goal, the Flyers took a too many men on the ice penalty, their second of the game, giving the Devils, who just picked up momentum from their goal, on the PowerPlay. On the ensuing man-advantage, Zajac scored his second of the game putting the Devils up 3-1. The two Devils goals were separated by just one minute and four seconds. 

Philadelphia took nine shots in the third but were unable to solve Schneider. Andy Greene tacked on a empty net goal with seven seconds remaining giving the Flyers their second consecutive defeat first time since the first two games of the season. 

Prior to tonight, the Flyers had only surrendered three goals against in all third periods this season. Tonight alone, they allowed three. 
Voracek, who still has yet to score this season, led the Flyers with six shots on goal tonight. 
Vinny Lecavalier suited up for the first time this season. He replaced the injured Pierre Edouard Bellemare. Lecavalier assisted on Luke Schenn's goal. 
Brother Brayden also picked up an assist on the Flyers lone goal. 
Steve Mason, who has never beaten the Devils in his career, stopped 29 shots on 32 attempts in a losing effort. 

Jake Voracek:
"We didn't play good enough to win the hockey game. They deserved the two points. Every guy in the locker room tries to win the game. 
Comments like we don't play with heart are stupid. We just didn't have a good enough game and we'll have to be better tomorrow."

Steve Mason:
"We gave them the opportunities and they capitalized. We have to have a better overall game."

Claude Giroux:
"We've been playing good hockey as a team and this is just a little blip in the road. Good thing about this is we get to play tomorrow and put this behind us."

Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to put this loss behind them tomorrow when they head to Buffalo to face the Sabres, who defeated them on Tuesday.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Flyers Honor Briere, Lose to Sabres in OT

The Philadelphia Flyers came back twice tonight from 2-0 then 3-2 deficits just to fall 4-3 in overtime to the Buffalo Sabres. 

Danny Briere, who announced his retirement in the offseason, was honored by the Philadelphia Flyers prior to the game tonight. Briere dropped the ceremonial first puck with his three sons right by his side. 

As if being caught up in the ceremony, the Flyers got off to a slow start allowing Buffalo an early 2-0 lead. The Flyers took two shots in the opening two minutes then went 12 minutes without a shot while allowing nine against and two scores. 

Tyler Ennis got the Sabres on the board at 6:36 on a wraparound that snuck through Steve Mason's pad. Mason made 36 saves in the loss tonight. Jamie McGinn netted Buffalo's second goal on a tip in while on the PowerPlay just four minutes later. 

Chris VandeVelde cut the lead in half with his first goal of the season before the period was out. VandeVelde's wrist shot beat Sabre goalie Chad Johnson from the top of the circle. 

After a scoreless second period, Brayden Schenn completed the comeback 8:14 minutes into the third period when Scott Laughton made a perfect cross crease pass that Schenn deposited. 

The comeback was short lived as Buffalo took the lead right back only 1:24 minutes later. Jake McCabe's shot from the point made its way through traffic and past Mason giving the Sabres a 3-2 lead at 9:38. 

The Flyers, however, channeled their inner Danny Briere in the final minute as they refused to give up. With the goalie pulled, Claude Giroux ripped a shot on goal that Schenn redirected past Johnson sending the game to overtime earning at least one point.  

In the three on three OT, the Flyers got the first huge chance. Sam Gagner cut in on net and was stopped by Johnson but Laughton had wide open net yet somehow Johnson got his hand on it keeping the game alive. Moments later the Sabres forward Zengus Girgensons found himself on a breakaway and he beat Mason through the five hole giving the Sabres the win they deserved. 

The Flyers lost Pierre Edouard Bellemare to a knee injury tonight. Bellemare was cross checked from behind landing on his knees in the first period. He immediately got up in pain and fell back to the ice. He was helped off the ice and did not return. 
Michael Raffl, who passed out in the last game, passed all his concussion tests and was cleared to play tonight. Raffl played 17:05 minutes tonight. 
The Sabres outshot the Flyers 40-33. 
Flyers went 0-2 on the PowerPlay and 1 for 2 on the penalty kill. 
Luke Schenn played tonight in replacement of Brandon Manning. Schenn picked up two assists. 

Danny Briere:
"That two month stretch all the way to the Stanley Cup Final [in 2010] coming back against Boston while being down 0-3 to win that series was probably the biggest thrill. It was a blast playing [in Philadelphia]. I loved how passionate the city got especially in the Spring during playoff time. It's pretty cool to find out the fans love you still."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"We had a good first few minutes and didn't sustain that. The rest of the game was up and down. I thought Buffalo moved the puck really well. 
We couldn't sustain anything on a consistent basis but we found a way to continue to push to get it overtime."

Steve Mason:
"We're lucky we got the one tonight but we needed the other one as well."

Brayden Schenn:
"Too many mistakes tonight. Not a great start to the game. We came out flat. I think we have to be ready to play. So we gotta get back to the drawing board."

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will look to get back to their winning ways when they host the New Jersey Devils on Thursday. 

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Flyers Top Rangers in Shootout

The Philadelphia Flyers scored twice in the shootout to defeat the New York Rangers 3-2 tonight. 

Tied at two apiece after 60 minutes of hockey, the game went to three on three overtime. The two teams combined for eight shots not counting Sam Gagner's breakaway in which Henrik Lundqvist was down and out, however the puck slipped off Gagner's stick keeping this game tied up. Overtime was still not enough and the Flyers would go to their first shootout of the season. 

Sam Gagner went first with a chance to remdeem himself. Gagner made a beautiful forehand to backhand beating Lundqvist putting the Flyers 1-0. 

Steve Mason, who made 37 saves tonight, stopped Mats Zuccarello's attempt keeping the Flyers up one. 

Claude Giroux was up next. Giroux went in on Lundqvist, who was also phenomenal tonight stopping 46 Flyers shots, faked a shot then made a smooth backhand to forehand then pulling it back to the backhand beating Lundqvist, who was deked out of his skates. 

Derek Stephan cut the lead in half beating Mason through the five hole. 

Wayne Simmonds was stopped by Lundqvist leaving the game in the hand of Dominic Moore. Moore also tried to go five hole but Mason learned quickly stopping Moore for the 2-1 win in the shootout; 3-2 for the game. 

Mark Streit got the Flyers on the board first at 11:15 of the opening period on a blast from the point. The goal was assisted by Wayne Simmonds and Sam Gagner. However, the Rangers  responded 2:15 minutes later when JT Miller found a rebound and batted it out of the air past Mason, knotted the game up at one after one.
The Flyers and Rangers traded goals less than three minutes apart in the second period as well. Laughton scored first for the Flyers after taking advantage of a turnover and ripping a perfect shot past Lundqvist's glove side at 2:07. 2:41 minutes later, Derick Brassard took advantage of a Rangers PowerPlay after his shot deflected off Ryan White's stick and past Mason. 

Philadelphia played very well in the third period and outshot New York 18-9 but were unable to end this game prior to overtime where they also outshot the Rangers 5-3. 

A scary incident occurred in the second period when it appeared that Michael Raffl collapsed on the Flyers bench. Raffl, who took an incidental elbow to the chin, was taken back to the locker room but not that hospital. Raffl missed the remainder of the game but was up taking and walking around afterwards. GM Ron Hextall said Raffl 'fine' after the game. 
The first coaches challenge in a Flyers game was used tonight. The Rangers scored, however, the goal was immediately waved off for goalie interference. The Rangers challenged the play but the ruling was upheld. 
The Flyers outshot the Rangers 48-39. It was Philadelphia's highest shot total of the season thus far. 
The Flyers went 0-2 on the PowerPlay and 2 for 3 on the penalty kill. 
Scott Laughton scored his first goal of the season tonight. 

Claude Giroux: 
On Michael Raffl:
"Michael is a funny guy and sometimes he does something funny. I thought he was joking around and I told him to move. And I realized rhat he wasn't joking and I started freaking out and yelling at Jimmy [McCrossin]. It wasn't a fun moment and the whole team was pretty worried but he looks good right now. It was pretty scary."

Steve Mason:
"Hard fought right to the end. I felt the guys really deserved a win tonight. It was a back and fourth game, we went up and they come right back and tied it up right away both times. But we were able to come through and persevere in the shootout which is great to see."

Sam Gagner:
"I felt like a made a good move, it just slipped off my stick. But I was able to atone for it in the shootout."

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers host the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night. 

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Flyers Comeback to Beat Bruins in OT

Steve Mason, who came in relief of Michal Neuvirth, made the save of the year so far, keeping it a 4-2 Boston lead in the third period helping swing the momentum in Philadelphia's favor. 

The Flyers turned the game around and scored two goals in the next four minutes on tallies from Claude Giroux and Wayne Simmonds tying the game at four a piece. 

In overtime after the Bruins were called for hooking, captain Claude Giroux rocketed his second of the game past Bruins goalie Tuuka Rask giving Philadelphia a 5-4 overtime victory the over the Boston Bruins tonight. 

The win wasn't without loss, however. The Flyers finished the game without the services of Sean Couturier and Michal Neuvirth who both left with upper body injuries. Neuvirth got the start tonight and surrendered two goals against in the opening period. The first came after Giroux turned the puck over behind the net at 13:28 which led to a shot in the slot that Neuvirth stopped but was unable to get the Brett Connolly's rebound. The second goal came on the PowerPlay late in the first when Patrice Bergeron batted the puck out of mid air past Neuvirth. Bergeron's stick not only hit the puck but also connected with Neuvirth's helmet which may have led to the injury. Neuvirth finished the final two minutes of the period but did not return in the second. Sean Couturier also left the game in the first intermission after taking a high hit from ex Flyer Zac Rinaldo. Couturier did not return. 

The Rinaldo play put the Flyers on the man-advantage for 5 minutes, however, they were without their top two centers as Couturier was injured and Giroux was in the penalty box for a coincidental minor. The PowerPlay was so poor that the Flyers not only got out shot 2-0 during it, but also surrendered a shorthanded goal against from Chris Kelly, who incidentally redirected Loui Eriksson's shot off his skate and past Mason giving Boston their first lead of the game at 3-2. The rest of the period was more of the same for the Flyers who just could not generate anything. At 8:48 the Flyers went down 4-2 when Jimmy Hayes scored a soft goal from a bad angle on Mason. 

Philadelphia, who got first period goals from Pierre Edouard Bellemare, who buried his own rebound and Sam Gagner, from on a nice shot coming up the left wing, refocused during the intermission and outplayed Boston the entire period while out shooting them 11-6. However at 6:34 David Pastrnak had a wide open net to extend the Bruins lead to 5-2, instead it was Mason who threw out his arm and flat our robbed him. 74 seconds later, Jake Voracek took advantage of a Bruins turnover from behind the net and found Giroux in front and the Flyers were back within one again. 2:36 minutes later, Wayne Simmonds flew down the left side of the ice and sniped a shot top shelf past Rask's glove tying this contest. 

Philadelphia kept Boston from taking any shots in the final 12 minutes of the third period forcing 3 on 3 overtime. 

In overtime, Michael Del Zotto got hooked down while rushing up the ice giving the Flyers their second PowerPlay of the game. While on the 4 on 3 PowerPlay, Mark Streit setup Giroux for the one time blast and this game was over. 

Coach Dave Hakstol rearranged the lines separating Giroux and Voracek in the third period in an attempt to spark something. He then put them back together and during their first shift back Giroux scored assisted by Voracek sparking the comeback. 
Voracek picked up two assists tonight for his first multipoint game of the season. 
Claude Giroux scored his second and third goals of the season. It was his first multi goal game of the season. 
Steve Mason earned his first win of the season. 
Brayden Schenn was scratched due to an upper body injury tonight. RJ Umberger was inserted into the lineup as his replacement. 
Luke Schenn replaced the healthily scratched Brandon Manning. 
11 Flyers cracked the scoreboard tonight including Bellemare, Chris VandeVelde, Ryan White and Luke Schenn who all picked up their first point of the season. 

Coach Dave Hakstol:
On Rinaldo hit: "I’m not gonna comment on that hit at all. There’s no place for it. That’s all I have to say. No place for it."

Steve Mason:
On replacing Michal Neuvirth: "It looked like [Neuvirth] got dinged up a little bit at the end of the [first] period. I wasn't sure what was going to happen but I just tried to prepare as fast as possible."
On his huge save: "I got interfered with to start so I was already falling back and was able to track the puck. I found it in the last second and was able to get my arm on it and keep it out of the net. It was a good moment there."

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers have off until Saturday when they host the New York Rangers. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Flyers Shoot For The Stars, Fall Short

The highflying Dallas Stars (5-1) defeated the Philadelphia Flyers (2-2-1) 2-1 tonight. 

The Stars handed the Flyers their first home loss of the season behind a great performance from Antti Niemi who stopped 34 of 35 shots including 14 in the final period as the Stars clung on to their lead. 

After not having played since Wednesday, the Flyers got off to a sluggish start. The Stars on the other hand came out flying outshooting the Flyers 14-7 in the opening period while scoring the game's first goal with just 52 seconds prior to the buzzer. Brandon Manning failed to corral the bouncing puck in his defensive zone and Tyler Seguin chopped at it getting just enough to sneak it through Steve Mason's pads for the 1-0 lead. 

Steve Mason, who returned to action tonight after missing the last two games for family reasons, played well stopping 30 shots on 32 attempts falling just short.

The only other goal Mason allowed happened just 11 seconds into the second period when the Flyers turned the puck over in the neutral zone leading to a 2 on 1. NHL leading scorer last year, Jamie Benn looked Mason off and then beat him glove side for the two goal lead. 

Philadelphia made a strong push in the third period finally finding their legs and outshot Dallas 15-6. Sean Couturier cut the lead in half when Wayne Simmonds' rebound bounced off his skate and past Niemi for his first of the season. However, it was just not enough. Matt Read took a penalty with 2:06 remaining killing any chance the Flyers had to get an extra attacker late in the game. 

The Flyers went 2 for 2 on the penalty kill tonight. They have killed off 13 straight over their last three games. 
Tonight was Steve Mason's first home start of the season. He is still looking for his first win of the season. 
Sean Couturier scored his first goal of the season tonight assisted by Wayne Simmonds and Matt Read. 
Philadelphia went 0-4 on the PowerPlay. They are 3 for 20 on the season. 
Jamie Benn's goal puts him in the league lead with 6. 
Claude Giroux (8), Jake Voracek (6) and Michael Raffl (3) combined for 17 of the Flyers 35 shots. 

Steve Mason:
"I think the guys competed hard to get back in the game and made it interesting in the end. We came close but unfortunately, came up short."
When asked about his first game since October 10th:
"It got better as the game went on. they're a good teamIt was kind of trial by fire."

Sean Couturier:
"It was an up and down game. I think we had our chances but we didn't capitalize." 

Claude Giroux:
We were flat at the end of the [first] period. We stopped winning battles for a bit. But when we got back to playing our game, we were playing well."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"It took us some time to find our energy. We had our moments. We just couldn't find our legs early on. The schedule is what it is."

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers get right back into action tomorrow night when they head to Boston to play the Bruins. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Flyers Shutout Defending Cup Champion Blackhawks on Timonen Night

Today was one of those nights that got circled on the calendars of all Philadelphia Flyers fans. Kimmo Timonen retirement night. After a great ceremony for one of the classiest guys in the game, the Flyers treated the fans to 3-0 shutout win over the reigning Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks. 

Michal Neuvirth was the star of the show again as he backed up his 31 save shutout on Monday with a 30 save shutout tonight. Neuvirth's shutout streak is currently at 132:05 minutes. 

Philadelphia's defense and special teams played a huge part in Neuvirth's success. The Flyers blocked 17 shots while killing all five PowerPlay chances from the Blackhawks. Philadelphia, who started the season giving up four PowerPlay goals in the first 10 attempts, have since killed 11 straight. 

Special teams defensively wasn't the only thing clicking. Sam Gagner lit the lamp on the PowerPlay for the Orange and Black in the second period which ultimately became the game winning goal. The goal which came on a nice shot from the top of the circle was Gagner's first as a Flyer. 

Claude Giroux extended the Flyers lead later in the period at 16:21 on his first of the season as well. Giroux found Michael Raffl's rebound and buried it putting Philadelphia up 2-0 after two. 

The Blackhawks pressed hard in the final period out shooting the Flyers 15-6 but Neuvirth stood tall denying every opportunity. Matt Read put this game away at 17:25 after cleaning up Wayne Simmonds rebound for his second of the season finalizing this game at 3-0. 

1) Chicago has not won a regular season game in Philadelphia since Nov of 1996. 
2) The Flyers went 5 for 5 on the penalty kill and 1 for 6 on the PowerPlay.
3) Claude Giroux played in his 500th career NHL game tonight. 
4) Firsts:
Sam Gagner scored his first goal of the season and as a member of the Flyers.
Claude Giroux picked up his first goal of the season.
Jake Voracek picked up his first point of the season assisting on Giroux's goal. 
Michael Del Zotto earned his first point as well assisting on Sam Gagner's tally. 
Michael Raffl also earned his first point of the season when he assisted on Giroux's. 

Michal Neuvirth
"The guys in front of me have been unbelievable blocking shots and our penalty kill has been unreal. The last two games have been a great team effort."
Kimmo Timonen:
"There’s no way to put it other than saying thank you to the fans. I had a great time in Philly.”

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers have off until Tuesday when they host the Dallas Stars.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Flyers Win Home Opener

The Philadelphia Flyers just got the best kind of revenge. After losing 7-1 in Florida's home opener on Saturday, they took advantage of their opportunity for immediate revenge with a 1-0 shutout win over the Panthers tonight. 

The victory was the first of the season for the Orange and Black who improve to a 1-1-1 record on the season. Michal Neuvirth, who was outstanding, made 31 saves in the shutout win tonight in his first start of the season other Flyers. 

After the leaders of the Flyers called a players only meeting following the ugly loss on Saturday, they needed a big comeback tonight, no matter who the opponent was. And that's exactly what they got. Tonight's win was a full team, full 60 minute effort. The Flyers outshot, outhit, blocked more shots and ultimately out scored their opponent giving new head coach Dave Hakstol a well deserved first career victory.  

Philadelphia got off to a shaky start when Michael Raffl took a four minute double minor less than two minutes into the game. Instead of folding, the Flyers stood tall and came out unscathed, killing all four minutes garnering all the momentum. Less than 40 seconds later, Brayden Schenn put the Flyers in the lead burying a rebound from Sam Gagner, who suited up for his first game as a Flyer. The goal was Schenn's second of the season. 

The penalty kill saved the Flyers tonight as they were forced to kill six man-disadvantages, four coming in the opening period. After allowing four PowerPlay goals against in the first two games (three for Florida on Saturday), the Flyers went a perfect 6 for 6 tonight.  

1) Coach Dave Hakstol earned his first career NHL win. 
2) Steve Mason didn't suit up for the Flyers due to personal reasons. His father is having medical issues. 
3) Michal Neuvirth started tonight's game in Mason's absence earnig his first start, first win and first shutout as a member of the Flyers. 
4) Sam Gagner replaced RJ Umberger who is out with an upper body injury. Gagner picked up his first point (assist) of the season and as a member of the Orange and Black while taking 3 shots in 14:56 minutes in his Flyers debut. 
5) Radko Gudas skated in his Flyers debut tonight as well replacing the healthily scratched Luke Schenn. Gudas was a +1 took one shot in 16:40 minutes. 
6) Jake Voracek has gone pointless in his first three games. All last season, he never went three games without a point.
7) The Flyers won their first home opener in four years. 

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"It comes down to the players going out and playing a high intensity [game], making plays. There was good pace to the game. It took all 60 minutes but it was a good win for our team."

Claude Giroux:
"The reason for our [players only] meeting was our path. It was to get everyone to relax and not hit the panic button. 
On Hakstol earning his first win:
"The guys are pretty happy for him. Anytime our coach gets his first win it's special."

Michal Neuvirth:
"I think the last game helped me a lot. I was feeling good the whole day and it was a great team effort. I just played my game but it wasn't just my shutout it was the whole team."

Sam Gagner:
On his first assist as a Flyer: 
"We were trying to play with a lot of pace and get pucks on net and we got rewarded with the goal. It's a nice feeling." 
On Neuvirth's play:
"He was awesome. He was a big reason why we won."

Drop The Puck:
On Wednesday, the Flyers will honor Kimmo Timonen when they host the defending Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Panthers Destroy Flyers in Florida's Home Opener

The Florida Panthers were large and in charge in their home opener as they wiped the floor with the Philadelphia Flyers winning 7-1 tonight. 

The Panthers got off to an extremely quick start scoring four goals in 6:46 minutes including twice on the PowerPlay. Steve Mason had arguably his worst game as a Flyer allowing four goals on 8 shots. He struggled with puck control which led to the first and fourth goal while allowing a long goal from the top of the circle on Florida's second tally. 

The Panthers first goal came just 1:23 in when Jussi Jokinen dumped the puck in on Mason from the red line. Mason struggled to control the puck leaving it in the slot where Vincent Trocheck won the race and put Florida up early scoring his first of four points tonight. 

Philadelphia also had issues on the penalty kill tonight as they did all last season surrendering three PowerPlay goals against on seven tries, two of them coming on back to back man advantages early. The first came off the stick of Nick Bjugstad on a wrister from the top of the circle at 4:55 while the second was on a power move in front by Reilly Smith just one minute later. 

As if the night weren't already bad enough for Mason, at 6:46 while playing the puck from behind the net Mason gave it away in front leading to an easy goal for Jussi Jokinen. That would be the end of the night for Steve Mason, unfortunately not for the Flyers. 

Philadelphia picked up the pace a bit in the second period but not until after Jaromir Jagr extended the lead to 5-0 just 33 seconds in with his first of the season. 

Mark Streit scored the lone goal for the Flyers two minutes later, but to make things worse, the Panthers tacked on two more in the final period on tallies from Jagr and Smith in both of their second goals of the game, Smith's coming on the PowerPlay.  

1) After Steve Mason was pulled for allowing four goals in eight shots, Michal Neuvirth got his first action as a member of the Flyers. Neuvirth stopped 19 of 22 in his debut. 
2) Claude Giroux and Wayne Simmonds assisted on Mark Steit's PowerPlay goal. It was the first point of the season for all three players. 
3) 6:46 minutes became the fastest four goals to start a game against the Flyers in their franchise history. 
4) The Flyers ultimately outshot the Panthers 39-30. 
5) Philadelphia had a players only meeting after the game due to the poor effort tonight. 
6) Mark Streit and Jake Voracek led the Flyers with 6 shots each. Voracek is scoreless in his first two games. 

Coach Dave Hakstol: 
"We're real disappointed with the start. It should leave a sour taste for everybody. When you give up a goal in the first minute or two of each period it's a deep hole to dig [out of]."
On the players only meeting: "One thing that is absolute is no one is going to overreact. You take the situation and you deal with it."

Steve Mason
"I take full responsibility for the outcome of this game and this loss. I'm disappointed in that effort. I'll put it behind me and refocus. We have a good team and good coaches, I put this one on myself."

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will have a shot at instant retribution when they face the same Florida Panthers team in Philadelphia for their own home opener on Monday. 

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Flyer Drop Opener in First Ever 3 on 3

Tied at two apiece after regulation, the Philadelphia Flyers (0-0-1) and the Tampa Bay Lightning (1-0-0) went to the first ever three on three overtime, which was newly mandated by the NHL for this season. 

Exciting exciting exciting! That was what everyone was saying the three on three would be. So anticipation was very high for the first one. The thought was by changing the traditional four on four overtime to three on three it would create more space - leading to more goals and excitement. And more goals would lead to less shootouts. And the first ever three on three did not disappoint. 

In just under four minutes there were eight shots, three breakaways, multiple off man rushes, a penalty shot and most importantly, a goal. Unfortunately for the Flyers, it was Lightning defenseman Jason Garrison who ultimately scored on the breakaway after Valtteri Filppula made a nifty skate pass to get the rush started securing the 3-2 overtime victory for the Lightning in both teams season opener. 

Goal Summary:
1st periodNo Goals
Shots: 13-10 PHI

2nd period: 
1:25 - TB: Jason Garrison (1) from Ryan Callahan and Jonathan Drouin
Garrison took a wrist shot from the point early in the middle period with a lot of traffic in front. The puck snuck through the traffic and Steve Mason putting the Lightning up 1-0. 

10:14 - PHI: Matt Read (1) from Scott Laughton and RJ Umberger
Read did a good job to keep the puck alive off the boards getting it to RJ Umberger. Umberger quickly fed Laughton in front who set up Read in the slot. Read beat Ben Bishop through the five hole to tie the game at one. 

12:03 - PHI PPG: Brayden Schenn (1) from RJ Umberger and Evgeny Medvedev
Medvedev blasted a shot from the point on the PowerPlay that hit Umberger. He then made a touch pass to Schenn who buried it for the first PowerPlay goal of the season for the Flyers. 

18:22 - TB PPG: Ryan Callahan (1) from Victor Hedman and Jonathon Drouin
Hedman took a shot from the high slot that Mason stopped, however Callahan found the rebound and buried it from a tough angle close to the goaline. 

Shots: 13-3 TB

3rd period: 
No Goals
Shots: 6-4 PHI

2:17 - TB: Jason Garrison (2) from Alex Killorn and Valtteri Filppula
Filppula stepped on the puck and kicked it from the boards to Killorn who sent Garrison off to the races. Garrison beat Mason through the five hole on a nice forehand to backhand to win the game. 

The Flyers were given two penalty shots tonight, yet they failed to convert on both - Claude Giroux in the first period and Scott Laughton in overtime. 
Coach Dave Hakstol made his NHL coaching debut tonight. 
TB outshot the Flyers 32-25. 
Both teams went 1-3 on the PowerPlay. 
Evgeny Medvedev scored his first NHL point with the assist on Schenn's goal. 
RJ Umberger had two assists. 

Claude Giroux: 
On whether they are happy with a point:
"We're not happy about the results but I think we played the way we wanted to. We were pretty consistent and that's a good sign."
On the new 3 on 3: 
"You need a good strategy to win. It's too bad we didn't get the win because we played pretty good."

Steve Mason:
"It was a great effort overall. The guys can look in the mirror and be happy with that. It would have been great to get the win, but we'll salvage the one point and move onto our next game."

Coach Dave Hakstol:
"We played a good 60 minute hockey game. No one is satisfied but we know what we did right and [we will] learn from the things that didn't go right."
On what it was like to coach his first NHL game:
"I don't know I haven't really thought about it. I liked the way our team played and that's what my focus it. I'm excited to see everyone go out there and play their role."

Drop The Puck:
The Flyers head to Florida to play the Panthers on Saturday night.