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Blue Jackets down Flyers in overtime yet again, this one 4-3

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That’s certainly not gonna help in the old playoff chase, eh?

NHL: Philadelphia Flyers at Columbus Blue Jackets Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Flyers began the night with a prime chance to gain ground in the Eastern Conference playoff race, but ended it sitting farther behind.

Seth Jones scored with 32 seconds left in overtime as the Blue Jackets downed the Flyers, 4-3, in a back-and-forth affair at Nationwide Arena. It was a particularly painful defeat for the Flyers, who were looking to close the gap on the Blue Jackets, Penguins, and Hurricanes ahead of them in the standings.

FIRST PERIOD

The Flyers would earn the early power play chance as Travis Konecny got dumped awkwardly into the boards by Columbus captain Nick Foligno 3:20 in.

Jakub Voracek would make Konecny’s pain worth it, firing home a wrist shot past Sergei Bobrovsky to give the Flyers a 1-0 lead just 3:30 in. The Flyers needed just 10 seconds to pierce the Blue Jackets’ second-ranked penalty kill, a rarity as it snapped a streak of 11-straight kills for them.

With 13:47 left in the period the Flyers would buzz in the Columbus zone again, but Bobrovsky came up with a huge save on Michael Raffl as the fourth line created a nice scoring chance off a good forecheck.

Strange penalty goes against the Flyers as Brian Elliott gets called for a delay of game with 11:15 left in the first. A puck fluttered over the net and Elliott knocked the net off trying to track the puck. Officials ruled that Elliott did so intentionally, though what is his other option to just let the puck possibly go in his own net?

Columbus would take their gift gladly, with Oliver Bjorkstrand mashing home a rebound late in the power play to tie things up at 1-1. Boone Jenner appeared to bump into Elliott just before the puck went home, but Scott Gordon lost his ensuing challenge and the goal was upheld.

After getting a pair of breaks early, the Blue Jackets looked to continue to get good fortunes in the form of a go-ahead goal. But not so fast my friends.

Brian Elliott made an initial save on Bjorkstrand, but the forward kicked the rebound off of Ivan Provorov and over the goal line with 6:39 to go in the period. There is some crazy rule (it’s 49.2 in the old book) that states that a kicking motion can’t deflect off an opposing player and into the net and be rewarded as a good goal. Sound insanely stupid, but hey it really helped the Flyers!

The Flyers needed to survive a dangerous Blue Jackets power play and turned what appeared to be a 2-1 deficit into a 2-1 lead thanks to an incredible effort from James van Riemsdyk on the following shift. JVR followed home a rebound of a Claude Giroux chance, but the Flyers were offsides at the blue line and Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella challenged the goal and was spot on to pull the Flyers’ go-ahead goal off the board.

So if you’re counting at home, that’s one goal apiece for the Flyers and Blue Jackets and two for the disallowed goals. Super fun and cool.

But the Flyers weren’t done trying to get another good goal up on the board and thank God they didn’t stop trying. Try and you shall succeed and that’s exactly what happened when Travis Sanheim finally broke the tie with two minutes left in the period after two attempts from each team to take the lead were removed from the board. Sanheim followed up on a mad scramble in front of Bobrovsky and slotted a loose puck past the netminder to give the Flyers a 2-1 lead.

AFTER 20: Flyers 2, BJ’s 1

After a pretty wild first 20 minutes, the first five minutes of the second featured a bunch of slop as things settled down a bit.

A push from the Blue Jackets would come soon enough, though, as the home team would tilt the ice towards Elliott after the midway point. They would find an equalizer, too, with Artemi Panarin stuffing home his 25th of the season to tie things up at 2-2. The goal came 7:31 into the period.

Not only did the Flyers surrender the tying goal, but newcomer Ryan Hartman would take a bad penalty the shift after the goal and send the Blue Jackets to the power play. The newest Flyer plays with an edge, but it was just a stupid play as he tried to level Matt Duchene and got caught for a charging call.

Sean Couturier would put an end to the Blue Jackets man-advantage as he was hooked on a shorthanded breakaway, evening things up at 4-on-4 for more than a minutes before an abbreviated Flyers power play. Nothing would be doing, but Couturier cancelling out a key power play came at a great time for the Flyers.

With three minutes left in the period Hartman had a great chance to give the Flyers the lead, but he fired the chance wide after a nice feed from JVR to spring him down the middle. Would have been a perfect time for Hartman’s first as a Flyer but it wasn’t meant to be.

Panarin’s marker would be the only goal of the period as both teams would head to the third tied up at 2-2.

AFTER 40: Flyers 2, BJ’s 2

Elliott would be busy early in the third as the Blue Jackets searched for a go-ahead goal, but the Flyers netminder stood tall on chances from Cam Atkinson and Duchene to start the period. Elliott was a little jumpy early, but settled down nicely in this one.

But the pressure would pay off for the Blue Jackets, with Scott Harrington firing a missile past Elliott 4:15 into the period to take their first lead of the night at 3-2. The slow start to the period would continue as Columbus set up in the Flyers’ zone for the better part of the first five minutes of the third.

Looking up to see themselves down a goal, the Flyers finally ventured into the Columbus zone with a great shift from Couturier. The pivot nearly scored a wicked, blind turn around backhand attempt, then fired a hard wrist shot to the belly of Bobrovsky to get the Flyers going with just under 11 minutes remaining.

With 6:48 left, it would be another for Travis Sanheim, this one to even things up at 3-3 for the Flyers. Voracek caught Sanheim pinching down the right wing and the defenseman ripped home a wrist shot for his eight of the season, and a massive tying goal for the Flyers.

Scott Laughton had a golden chance to put in the go-ahead goal with 4:44 left, but his shot from the high slot was easily trapped by Bobrovsky. Laughton made a great move to buy extra room in the middle of the ice for the chance, but his shot left little to be desired.

Elliott would do his part to keep things scoreless at the other end, robbing Panarin on a sneaky chance with just over three minutes left. The Blue Jackets’ sniper got free near the left circle, but met the blocker of the veteran.

After a flurry from the Blue Jackets are the Flyers crease, Shayne Gostisbehere nearly snuck one by Bobrovsky at the other end after a creative play to bank the puck off the end wall and to himself for the quick chance. That would be the final chance as the teams would need overtime to settle this one.

AFTER 60: Flyers 3, BJ’s 3

The Flyers had the better of the play during the majority of the 3-on-3 but one mistake led to Panarin and Seth Jones in on a 2-on-1 with 32 seconds left and Jones made no mistake, beating Elliott to give the Blue Jackets a 4-3 win and the extra point. After all the pressure the Flyers put on before Jones’ goal, it was certainly a disappointing result.

FINAL: BJ’s 4, Flyers 3