Throughout the season, we’ll be taking a walk down memory lane whenever the Flyers open their season series against an opponent. We’ll be remembering a game, goal, or highlight Philly created while playing against that particular team. It won’t always be the most notable memory the Orange and Black have against that team, but it’ll be something that Flyers’ fans will want to remember.
For 29 of the other 30 teams in the NHL, the Philadelphia Flyers have a long history of games and moments to really showcase what this nostalgic series will be all about. Unfortunately, the Flyers open their season against the Vegas Golden Knights. According to math and science, the Orange and Black have played a grand total of (checks encyclopedias before talking to professors at UPenn)...two games against Vegas. Since one of those games was a loss at the Wells Fargo Center back in March, the Flyers’ best memory against the Golden Knights was their road win in Las Vegas back in February.
The Golden Knights were still surprising fans across the country with their success when the Flyers visited Nevada back on February 11th. Obviously, the players all traveled to Las Vegas, but many of those in attendance that night were Philly fans (we may have had a little something to do with that).
Philadelphia owns Las VegasPosted by Broad Street Hockey: For Philadelphia Flyers Fans on Sunday, February 11, 2018
The Flyers were able to send those who made the cross-country trip home happy with a 4-1 win following a night where ‘Let’s Go Flyers’ and ‘E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES’ chants (these chants were for the Philadelphia Eagles, the local football team that is part of the National Football League. See, a week before, on February 4th, the Eagles won the Super Bowl over the New England Patriots. The Pats’ quarterback dropped a pass, the Eagles’ backup quarterback caught a touchdown pass. It was a whole thing.) filled T-Mobile Arena.
Although they came away with the win, it wasn’t the easiest victory for the Flyers. At 5-on-5, the Golden Knights dominated with 62 shot attempts to the Flyers’ 32. On top of the possession numbers, the Orange and Black nearly allowed former player Pierre-Edouard Bellemare to extend Vegas’ lead to two midway through the opening frame. Fortunately for the Flyers, the Bellemare-led 2-on-0 looked like…a Bellemare led a 2-on-0.
Ghost falls down giving Bellemare a 2-on-0 chance, and well, he blew it. pic.twitter.com/dimwxiBQs0— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) February 12, 2018
Shortly after Bellemare’s offensive brilliance, Philly’s top line at the time of Claude Giroux-Sean Couturier-Travis Konecny were able to level the score at one.
In the midst of a second period where the Flyers lost the shot battle 15-7 and the shot attempt battle 28-9, they managed to win the period 2-0 thanks to a pair of tallies late in the stanza. After Andrew MacDonald redirected a Couturier shot past Marc-Andre Fleury with just under three minutes left in the second, Giroux tapped home a rebound created by a strong Couturier drive to the net for a somewhat backbreaking goal with only 5.8 seconds left in the period.
Radko Gudas added an empty-netter to finalize the 4-1 score in a game that featured an unexpected outcome for both of the goalies who earned decisions. Not only was Michal Neuvirth healthy, it was one of two games last season where he made over 35 saves. For Fleury, his 14 saves on 17 shots was his lowest number of saves or shots faced in a full game during his otherwise impressive 2017-18 campaign.
Again, this series will feature some more interesting Flyers’ moments as the season unfolds. They just had to play the Golden Knights in the season opener.