It seems like the Flyers are a second-period team now.
OK, so there’s probably more to it than that. But the Flyers picked up their second win of the young 2016-17 NHL campaign on Saturday night in Philadelphia by a score of 6-3 over the Carolina Hurricanes, and much like their first win in Los Angeles, the victory came on the back of a strong second period in which the guys in orange lit the lamp four different times.
After a week of slow starts of games to open the season, the Flyers actually managed to piece together a solid first 10 minutes of the game, as Carolina was forced to spend most of its time on its heels in the defensive zone as the Flyers had a couple of near-misses. The visitors managed to stem the tide a bit as the period went on, getting a couple of solid shifts of their own and forcing Steve Mason to stand tall early, but an overall uneventful first period came to an end with no score on either side.
Then came possibly the most eventful period of the Flyers’ season.
Thanks to a penalty on Wayne Simmonds in the last minute of the first period, Carolina would draw first blood on the power play, as a point shot by Justin Faulk made it through a few screens and bounced off of Ivan Provorov’s stick and past Steve Mason. The Hurricanes would double that lead a couple of minutes later, when a great cross-ice pass to Jordan Staal was one-timed in.
With the game starting to get out of hand, the Flyers managed to take it into their own hands and grab control. First, Brandon Manning continued his strong start to the season by taking a pass from Jake Voracek and dangling his way down to the goal line, where he’d slip the puck past Eddie Lack.
Slick dangles by Gostisbe.... Brandon Manning!? pic.twitter.com/x0GgMyJtHB— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) October 23, 2016
Then, just 2:29 later, the good guys would manage to tie things up, as a point shot from Provorov was tipped by Voracek and through Lack right in front of the net.
Sorry everyone you might have to get used to this... Voracek scores assisted by Konecny & Provorov. pic.twitter.com/sDaFO37jqH— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) October 23, 2016
Things would continue to ramp up as the period went on, but it was the Flyers who’d get their third straight goal and take the lead late in the period. Just as a power play was expiring, it was none other than the man on a four-game goal streak, Matt Read, who also tipped a shot from Provorov through the wickets and into the net.
Matt Read is now tied for the NHL lead in goals scored... pic.twitter.com/av1t64YD0E— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) October 23, 2016
And before we’d all managed to process the idea of Matt Read, NHL Goal-Scoring Leader (it’s true! At this moment, it’s true!), Shayne Gostisbehere threw it back to 2015-16 and whipped a shot far-side from the circle to double that lead to 4-2.
Hurricane killer Shayne Gostisbehere scores his first of the year! 4-2 Flyers pic.twitter.com/tGojafdq2g— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) October 23, 2016
(Look, sometimes the Flyers just score four goals in a period and force us to post four highlights in a row like this. We’re sorry. Actually, we’re not. Please allow us to keep doing this, the Flyers.)
Carolina would score one more before the two teams would reach intermission, but they’d never manage to tie things up, as the third period saw the orange and black keep the gas pedal down. Wayne Simmonds would also extend his goal-scoring streak to four games on the power play, while Voracek would ice things up with a shot past Lack on a delayed penalty with just over two minutes to go.
An uneven performance at the start was a long-gone memory by the time the final horn had blown, as the Flyers picked up their first home win of the season and halted their three-game losing skid.
SOME THINGS WE LIKED:
- There wasn’t much not to like when all was said and done, but we’d be remiss not to highlight Jakub Voracek, who had what looked like the best game he’s had in months. Even beyond the three-point performance, Voracek was forcing his way across the ice with control of the puck and making outstanding passes the way we’ve grown accustomed to seeing him do. Very encouraging game from him.
- This was certainly the best game of Ivan Provorov’s young career, and it came after two games where his performance looked like it left something to be desired. The two point shots that turned into Flyers goals were nice, but even beyond those,
- Steve Mason’s overall numbers aren’t fantastic, but he made some great saves late in the second and in the early third while the Flyers were trying to hold their newfound lead. Solid game for him.
- Outside of the Hurricanes’ game-opening goal, which was a product of an unintended deflection and three Flyers standing in front of Mason, the penalty kill was superb tonight. Just three shots would reach Mason across five Flyers penalty kills.
- The power play also looked great, scoring once and just missing a number of times even on the three tries where they were unsuccessful. Special teams turning around after a lackluster 2015-16 would go a long way for this team.
Comment of the Night:
Toronto took away an assist for Konecny on Matt Read’s goal.
Can’t let him overshadow Auston Matthews I guess.
Observations in the morning. Montreal on Monday. Good win. Go Flyers.