The Philadelphia Flyers rebounded from an ugly loss on Thursday night to defeat the New York Rangers by a score of 4-2.
The Flyers came out of the gate stronf in the first period. They were forced to kill off successive Scott Hartnell penalties in the early going, but they managed to get through it unscathed. On his first shift, and only 1:57 into the game, Hartnell took an unecessary boarding penalty, then, immediately after being released form the penalty box he took a tripping penalty. On both kills Steve Mason was spectacular. Less than a minute after killing the second penalty the Flyers opened the scoring. The goal was originally given to Brayden Schenn, however it deflected off of the stick of NYR defenseman Stralman, not the stick of Schenn. Therefore, Vincent Lecavalier earned his 13th goal of the year. Then, only 66 seconds later, Sean Couturier gave the Flyers a two goal lead with a beautiful breakaway move to beat Lundqvist. Couturier recevied a pass from Matt Read and had an open lane to King Henrik. The rest of the period was intense, physical hockey. The Flyers were outshot 12-10, but most of those shots came from the opening Rangers’ power plays.
The second period was much worse for the Flyers. The Rangers came out hard and the Flyers did not respond properly. Less than five minutes into the period Chris Krieder nicely redirected a Rick Nash pass/shot to cut the Flyers lead in half. Credit the Rangers for a great play on the goal, but the defense could have been better. The second goal against was the fault of Mason. Derick Brassard wound up from above the circles and his slap shot got through Mason’s five hole. Mason was screened by Grossmann on the play, but it is still a shot he should have had. Only a few minutes after the tying goal, Wayne Simmonds regained the lead for the Flyers on the power play. He got the puck and had an open Voracek across the ice. As everyone thought he was going to pass, he shot the puck past Lundqvist.
Also during the period, Zac Rinaldo and Dan Carcillo got into a few scrums. After taking matching unsportsmanlike minors, they looked to fight after coming out of the box. Rinaldo dropped his stick and one of his gloves while Carcillo did not. Rinaldo was incensed and both players were given a 10 minute misconduct. At the end of the period the Flyers were up 3-2, but being outshot 25-17.
The Flyers came out and took control in the third period. They outshot the Rangers 14-10 and controlled most of the play. On their first power play of the period the Flyers did everything but score (well actually they did score but the goal was waved off). Both power play units looked fantastic; the tic-tac-toe passing of the second unit was unbelievable. With under four minutes to go in regulation the Claude Giroux line had one of the best shifts of the game. They forechecked hard and did not let the puck leave the offensive zone. Finally, a shot ricocheted out to a wide open Luke Schenn who sealed the win for Philadelphia. The Rangers surged in the final few minutes, but Mason was equal to the task. The Flyers sakted off with a 4-2 victory.
-Wayne Simmonds was the best player on the ice. He had a goal, an assist, and he effectively got under the Rangers skin. He had six hits and three shots in just over 18 mins of ice time.
-Sean Couturier’s goal was amazing. Here is what Bill Clement had to say about it at the first intermission. I agree with him:
Keep looking at that replay if you want to know what Sean Couturier is gonna look like. Just a brilliant two-way player
He now has points in two straight games and is reminding us of his offensive potential. And oh by the way, his beard is fantastic.
-Steve Mason, with the exception of the second goal against, had a stellar game. He allowed 2 goals on 35 shots (.943 SV%) and made key momentum saves. He was bailed out twice by Rangers players missing open nets, but his fantastic saves speak for themselves.
-After an awful first half of the game, Scott Hartnell evened out and had a strong second half. He was instrumental in the final goal.
-The Flyers are now only one point behind the Rangers in the Metropolitan Division. However, the Capitals are only one point behind the Flyers. Starting tomorrow and 12:30pm on NBC, the Flyers play a home and home series against the Caps.