Asking for two wins in two days on the road against two really good teams was probably just a bit too much.
In a tough situation, the Flyers spent most of two periods seriously chasing the play, ultimately coughing up a 1-0 lead, and failing to complete a third-period rally, as they came up short in the second half of their Central division back-to-back with a 3-1 loss to the Dallas Stars.
The game actually started out reasonably well for the Flyers, as they seemed to get the better of the action for most of the first 10 or so minutes of the game. A couple of chances came around then for the team in orange and black, and would either end up as near-misses or were denied by Stars goalie Antti Niemi.
Michal Neuvirth -- getting the start on both ends of this back-to-back -- also turned aside a some opportunities from the home team, and it turned out he would end up doing a whole lot more of that as the night went on. From roughly the midway point of the first period through the end of the second period, it was pretty easy to forget that these two teams were even playing the same game.
Dallas, as they often do, just came at the Flyers in waves, skating them up and down the ice while piling up the shots and chances and drawing a number of penalties of penalties. The Flyers were outshot 34-15 through the first two periods, and that pretty much told the story as far as just how much the Stars controlled this game. If not for an outstanding effort from Neuvirth, moving well and routinely making great saves with the glove, this game could have got out of hand very quickly.
And yet, it was the Flyers who cashed in first. The Stars' first penalty of the night led to another beautiful power play bomb by Shayne Gostisbehere that ended up in the back of the net, and the Flyers had -- at least temporarily -- withstood the surge from the home team to grab a 1-0 lead just before the halfway mark of the contest.
Unfortunately, the push from Dallas would only continue, and as such it wasn't surprising when they finally broke through for two scores later in the period. For all of the nice-looking plays the Stars made through the neutral zone and in the offensive zone to set up high-quality chances, neither of their two goals are ones that are going to end up on highlight reels any time soon.
Mattias Janmark let a shot rip from the far-left edge of the circle that bounced off of Wayne Simmonds' skate and past Neuvirth to tie things up, and a few minutes later it was Antoine Roussel who tapped it home on a scramble in front of the net to give the Stars a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
Things didn't quite get easier for the Flyers from there, as almost immediately after the second goal they would end up spending four more minutes killing off two different penalties. But there was a bit of a charge in the third period -- one which saw Dave Hakstol, for the first time in a while, shake up his lines and put Giroux and Voracek back on the same forward line. There were a few opportunities for the Flyers, especially on a power-play chance right at the netmouth with about six minutes remaining.
But the goal would never come, as Jamie Benn would ice it up with an empty-netter in the final minute. A disappointing performance for the Flyers, and a shame to waste another outstanding performance by Neuvirth, but ultimately given the circumstances not a terribly surprising one.
Additional observations to follow.
Comment of the Night:
Do not agree with that call
-- armmyman16, presumably referring to one specific call that was made but saying something that could have been said a number of times tonight