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Sharks 3, Flyers 0: Philly shut out for the first time this season

We just had to ruin the Philly sports vibe again, didn’t we?

Morgan Frost drops down on a faceoff play against Nico Sturm Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images

If you forgot the Flyers even had a game against the San Jose Sharks tonight, I forgive you. It’s not every day that the Phillies get to advance to the World Series. I absolutely would’ve been amongst everyone else still partying in the streets while belting the chorus to Dancing On My Own at random intervals if I wasn’t on recap duty tonight. But nights like these are why we bring the recaps to you.

Period 1

Honestly, the most important part of this entire period didn’t have anything to do with the on-ice play. It was because the Flyers took the time to honor the return of Oskar Lindblom to Philadelphia. Hockey’s a business at the end of the day, and Chuck Fletcher needed to find the way to give Nic Deslauriers an overpriced contract somehow, but to lose a player like Lindblom is a major blow. There aren’t many others that show such resiliency and dedication while never losing that sunshine personality. We in Philly miss you, Oskar.

As for the play on the ice, it wasn’t the most exciting period in the world. It’s like the Flyers and Sharks were trying to give fans the ability to continue to process the fact the Phillies are going to the World Series.

Towards the middle of the period, James van Riemsdyk was hit by a shot and he went down the tunnel.

With nearly two minutes left in the period, there was a really good shot by Lukáš Sedlák, but James Reimer got a good stop on it. It was the most attention-grabbing moment of the first period for sure.

By the end of the period, the Flyers had nine shots on goal to the Sharks’ seven, but there were no goals to be found.

Period 2

Going into the start of this period, van Riemsdyk still wasn’t seen on the bench, which is never a good sign.

Things were still a little uneventful until 3:20 in the period when Wade Allision was called for a holding penalty. Scott Laughton was super close to scoring a shorthanded goal on the penalty kill, but Reimer did a good job of using his leg pads to stop the puck. The Sharks didn’t score either, though, which is the most important thing.

The Flyers got a power play of their own when Mario Ferarro got a tripping penalty at 6:13 in the period. Joel Farabee got the puck in the net, but unfortunately it didn’t actually count because a coach’s challenge determined Laughton was offsides.

Once it was back to 5-on-5 hockey, Erik Karlsson scored at 9:34 for the Sharks, and that one counted.

Then, at 18:29 in the period, Steven Lorentz scored. He batted the puck in baseball-style, which frankly just felt rude to do tonight of all nights.

It wasn’t a great period for the Flyers, but it certainly wouldn’t be the first time the team found themselves in a 2-0 hole in a game.

Period 3

This period mostly started off with not much happening, just the two teams exchanging chances, your normal second-game-of-a-back-to-back fare. Then, the Sharks got caught sending a puck over the glass and got called with a delay of game penalty. Morgan Frost had a couple dangerous chances towards the end of the power play, but ultimately it was no dice.

Of the Flyers that were still on the ice, there was still effort out there. With a little over five minutes left in the period, Farabee and Frost went off on a breakaway, with Farabee passing to Frost, but Reimer was there to help keep his shutout alive.

Not long after, Tortorella opted to pull Felix Sandström for the empty net. The early goalie pull wasn’t successful, though, as Nico Sturm earned himself an empty net goal with 3:54 remaining in the game. The Flyers weren’t even able to put up a scrappy, “We’re not going down without a fight!” goal and found themselves shut out.

Final Thoughts

Winning both games of a back-to-back is difficult, and the successful start that the Flyers have had to the season so far has, honestly, been a little bit flukey when we consider the actual talent levels of the players on the ice every night. Eventually the losses were gonna start coming again, folks.

Additionally, there was an extremely questionable coaching decision made in that final period. For some reason, John Tortorella made the choice to keep Kevin Hayes and Travis Konecny on the bench. Look, I’m no coach, but considering Hayes is the team’s point leader and Konecny is the team’s goal leader, it seems odd to not play them. Also, van Riemsdyk hadn’t come back out for any of the remainder of the game, which effectively cut the team down to rolling only three forward lines. Again, I’m no coach, but I’m not sure that’s what I’d do when down by two goals.

Anyways, put this game behind you, because the Phillies are going to the World Series.