Thirty-one saves from Steve Mason were not good enough for the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night. Mason continued to make one save after another to keep the Flyers in Game Seven but a dreadful second period doomed the orange and black to a 2-1 loss and an early exit from the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Mason deserved better than what the Flyers gave him. Since taking the reigns after Game Three, Mason was the sole reason the Flyers made it to Game Seven. Flyers fans have dreamed of a goaltender who can steal a game. Mason was a couple shots away from stealing the series.
Down 2-0 going into the third period, it did not look good for the Flyers. The Rangers had dominated the second period, and two defensive lapses resulted in goals from Daniel Carcillo and Benoit Pouliot.
Less than five minutes into the third, Jason Akeson wound up and fired a shot passed Henrik Lundqvist to slice the Rangers lead in half. There was some hope. After the goal, the Flyers peppered Lundqvist with shots and relentlessly pursued the puck. It would all prove to be too little, too late.
The Rangers came out with some early jump in the first period and Mason had to be sharp from the drop of the puck. After weathering the storm, the Flyers began to get their skating legs under them. They put several pucks into Lundqvist and outshot the Rangers 11-10 in the first period.
Similar to previous games in this series, the Rangers took over as the game progressed. The Flyers had another dreadful middle period. While the Rangers matched their energy from the first period, the Flyers wilted. Three minutes into the period, Carcillo wristed a pass from Mats Zuccarello by Mason for the first goal of the game. Mason never had a chance at stopping the puck.
From there, the Rangers continued to gain momentum and found the back of the net once again. On another cross-ice pass, Pouliot scored on a similar play to Carcillo to put the Rangers up by two.
The Flyers controlled much of the third period, but Lundqvist had an answer for every shot the Flyers threw at him. As the final seconds ticked off the clock, the capacity crowd at Madison Square Garden lifted their arms in celebration. The Rangers were moving on and the Flyers were sent home.
Tags: Philadelphia Flyers