The dream is dead.
The Philadelphia Flyers will not go 82-0-0 in 2019-20, after dropping the first game of their Western Canadian road trip to the Vancouver Canucks, 3-2 in a shootout.
Philly won the shot and shot attempt battle, but were never able to create enough momentum to open the floodgates, as Jacob Markstrom stole the show by stopping 30 of 32 shots on goal through 65 minutes, then denying both Jakub Voracek and Kevin Hayes in the shootout.
While Claude Giroux was able to bury his free breakaway attempt, it wasn’t enough, with Carter Hart conceding a pair of goals to Elias Pettersson and Tanner Pearson to allow Vancouver to escape with the extra standings point.
The Flyers didn’t play badly, but they just couldn’t seem to string together consecutive passes or consecutive shifts, losing races on the forecheck by a step, and not winning enough puck battles on the forecheck to sustain pressure.
There were positives to take from the loss- Carsen Twarynski’s first career goal, off a great outlet pass from Justin Braun; Matt Niskanen’s diving odd-man rush break-up and the zone entry that lead to his picking up a secondary assist on Oskar Lindblom’s game-tying goal; holding the Canucks to 24 shots on goal through three periods plus overtime; killing both Vancouver’s power plays, including a 4-on-3 for the final 1:13 of OT after Sean Couturier was whistled for throwing his stick (allegedly).
So we talked about a loss for the first time this season, but guess what? It wasn’t really all that negative. Turns out, five out of six points is pretty good. Listen to the postgame and see if you agree.