The Philadelphia Flyers got a taste of their own medicine on Monday afternoon, being downed by the New York Islanders 4-3 via shootout. The Flyers held a two goal lead heading into the third period but could not hold on. The Flyers do not have time to dwell on the loss considering that they are back in action tomorrow night against the Carolina Hurricanes.
The first period was scoreless, but it saw many chances go both ways. The game was also very physical and chippy. The second period saw the Flyers open up the game. Less than a minute and half into the second, Matt Read had a shorthanded opportunity that he turned into a goal with a nifty backhanded shot. Exactly eight minutes later the Islanders tied up the game on a power play goal from John Tavares. The Flyers opened up a two goal lead before the intermission, off of goals from Wayne Simmonds and Matt Read.
The third period was the complete opposite of Saturday’s third period. On Saturday, the Flyers outshot the Islanders 14-2 in the third; today, the Flyers were outshot 17-3. The Flyers were outworked and the only reason they did not lose in regulation was because of Ray Emery and his solid play. Brock Nelson and Kyle Okposo tallied in the third period to tie up the game. Overtime saw a few chances both ways, but nobody could snag the winner. In the ensuing shootout, Claude Giroux and Matt Read scored for the Flyers, while Vincent Lecavalier and Sean Couturier were denied. Frans Nielson, John Tavares, and Kyle Okposo scored for the Islanders and only Thomas Vanek was denied. The Flyers are now one point out of second place in the division with one game in hand on the second place Rangers.
-Jakub Voracek exited the game early with a hand injury after taking a slash to the wrists. According to Flyers beat writers, Voracek will be examined again tonight when the team returns to Philadelphia. Losing Voracek would be a major blow to this team.
-Ray Emery turned in a great performance, making 40 regulation and overtime saves. The Flyers continue to hang their goalies out to dry. It’s sad. I would talk about upgrading the defense or having better defensive commitment by the forwards, but has that not been talked about ad nauseum? Both Mason and Emery can play well and give the team a chance to win every night. Neither guy is going to “steal” a lot of games. Emery came close today, though.
-Wayne Simmonds leads the Flyers with 17 goals. He is on pace for 27-28 goals this season. However, if continues anywhere near his current pace, he will set a new career high and possibly eclipse 30. His previous career high is 28. He also sits at 99 career goals.