The Flyers got back in the win column on Tuesday night against the Calgary Flames. Kevin Hayes scored his first goal of the season thanks to a great play by Rasmus Ristolainen, and Cam Atkinson won it in overtime. Carter Hart made 33 saves in the win.
Let’s get right into breaking down all three goals from the Flyers’ 3-2 overtime victory.
10:31 1st - Oliver Kylington (1-0 Flames)
The Flames controlled most of the first period and they finally generated a goal, even though they didn’t necessarily deserve one on this shot.
There were several strong shifts for Calgary leading to their goal, as displayed by Natural Stat Trick’s Gameflow chart.
Those steps down were the Flames knocking on the door after a failed power play. And they got the first goal of the game on a fluky bounce.
Given that, it’s unfair to blame really anyone in particular for the goal. The Flyers were getting hemmed into their own zone time after time, but this time it was the first line and pair on the ice.
They had a chance to get the puck out of the zone off a faceoff win. Justin Braun tried to bank the puck out of the zone but Matthew Tkachuk made a skilled play to knock it out of midair and set up Elias Lindholm for a shot that Carter Hart covered up.
The Flyers once again won the faceoff and cleared the zone this time with some nifty skating by Ivan Provorov. Unfortunately, his backhand pass up ice was picked off and the Flames were moving in transition.
Hart knocked the initial shot to the corner, where Johnny Gaudreau beat Justin Braun to the puck and banked it to Oliver Kylington at the point. The defenseman threw an innocuous shot on net that Sean Couturier got a piece of, deflecting it by a moving Hart.
This was a bit of a “matter of time” goal. The Flames had plenty of chances early on and the Flyers’ inability to get the puck in deep –– or out of the zone –– cost them.
But that was the only goal that Carter Hart would allow.
4:37 2nd - Kevin Hayes (1-1 Tie)
Okay, this is the goal you came here for.
Kevin Hayes scored his first goal of the season in his first home game of the year. It was an emotional moment for Kevin and his teammates.
Hayes had a few cracks at it before his final shot slid into the back of the net.
First, Hayes won the neutral-zone faceoff and the Flyers got the puck in deep. But it’s important to note how the Flyers got the puck in deep.
It wasn’t a soft dump-in or rim around the boards. It was a slap shot by Rasmus Ristolainen, making sure Jacob Markstrom couldn’t play the puck. Markstrom can like be a third defenseman out there at times, as the Flyers saw in the first period. Ristolainen made an effective dump-in here.
The Flames got to the puck first, but the Flyers’ forecheckers were in good position. Joel Farabee and Cam Atkinson pressured Calgary in the corner to force a turnover. Hayes picked up the puck and was taken down as the puck squirted to the corner.
Noah Hanifin was able to get the puck up the boards, where Ristolainen went to work.
Ristolainen stepped up to hit Andrew Mangiapane as he retrieved the puck. Ristolainen then stole the puck from Hanifin as the Flames looked to exit the zone.
He stickhandled along the blue line and sent a backhand pass to Hayes. Hayes tried to get it across to Farabee, but his pass was knocked right back to him. Fortunately, Hayes was ready and buried the loose puck.
It was a tremendous sequence for Ristolainen, who has really been coming into his own recently. You could argue that Tuesday night was his best game as a Flyer.
That goal tied the game 1-1 early in the second period and it would remain that way until overtime.
0:45 OT - Cam Atkinson (2-1 Flyers)
Cam Atkinson got the monkey off his back to win the game in overtime. He put home Sean Couturier’s rebound for his first goal since October 27th in Edmonton, when he had two. He went eight games without a goal.
Couturier’s shot set up the goal, but Ivan Provorov made a good play in the defensive zone to get it started.
Provorov knocked down the puck off the stick of Gaudreau and then knocked it by the South Jersey native to spring Couturier.
From there, Couturier and Atkinson did their thing. They kept the option for a shot or pass open with Rasmus Andersson threatening to take away the pass but not much else.
Couturier’s shot created a juicy rebound that Atkinson buried.
Atkinson immediately acknowledged the play by Couturier.
That would do it.
The Flyers’ 2-1 win over the Flames was their first non-regulation win of the season. They previously lost in a shootout to Vancouver in the season opener and in overtime in Pittsburgh.
The only goal the Flames scored was a rather fluky one. Besides that, Carter Hart was perfect. He made 33 saves on 34 shots to raise his save percentage to .935.
For the offense, this was the Flyers’ ninth-straight game scoring two non-empty-net goals or fewer. They scored three against Arizona including an empty-netter. They have just 15 goals in their last nine games.
The Flames got a fluky one, but Ristolainen stepped up to set up Hayes, and Atkinson put the game away in overtime.