Flyers Force OT Late, Fall in Shootout to Rangers
With a shorthanded lineup, the Flyers came out firing and struck early. Then they battled through the lack of conditioning and ice time over the last 10 days.
When it came down to the wire, a late goal managed to get them a point in the standings and force overtime, but in a shootout, the Rangers would prevail with a pair of goals in a 3-2 final at Wells Fargo Center on Thursday night.
Right off the start, the Flyers got some energy going and generate pressure around the Rangers net. It took just 59 seconds for a scramble to result in a goal.
Michael Raffl got a shot off from in close that hit the post and sat behind Alexandar Georgiev. Nicolas Aube-Kubel was able to knock it home for his second goal of the season to give the Flyers the early lead.
Both teams had power-play chances in the remainder of the period. Two Flyers power plays came and went by the wayside, despite some solid pressure. The Rangers had a two-minute 5-on-3 that was cut short and turned to a 4-on-3 due to a hooking penalty on Chris Kreider.
Through 20 minutes, shots were 11-6 Rangers.
After failing to score on the final 27 seconds of a power play to open the period, the Flyers found themselves back on the penalty kill moments later. With four seconds left on the man-advantage, the Rangers finally made them pay.
A shot by Pavel Buchnevich was tipped in the high slot by Colin Blackwell, getting the Rangers on the board and evening things up at one at 3:24.
There were opportunities for both sides for the remainder of the period. The Flyers got two more power-play chances, including one with 1:30 left in the period that carried over to the third. The Rangers got another power play midway through the period. Buchnevich was also stopped on a breakaway by Carter Hart, but awarded a penalty shot and stopped again.
After two periods, the Rangers had a 23-13 lead in shots.
An evenly-matched third period ultimately produced a goal that put the Rangers ahead off a turnover. The Flyers failed to clear the zone, and Artemi Panarin ended up with the puck at the side of the net and made a great pass to the front, just within reach of Brendan Smith with a wide-open net. Smith scored for his first of the season at 8:21 of the third to give the Rangers the lead.
Late in the third, the Flyers managed the equalizer off another scramble in front. A wide shot allowed for a rebound to the front of the net. With the puck sitting in the crease, Joel Farabee was able to find it and poke it home to tie the game at two with 1:14 to play.
The Flyers managed a pair of shots in overtime, but had their momentum halted as the Rangers went to another power play with 2:37 to play. The Rangers had some chances, with Panarin hitting the post for the second time in the game, but failed to score. The final seconds disappeared and the game went to a shootout.
The Rangers struck in the first round of the shootout with a goal by Kaapo Kakko. Sean Couturier answered to start the second round, but Panarin finally solved Hart in the same round to give the Rangers the edge again. James van Riemsdyk fired wide on his attempt and the Rangers escaped with the win.
Georgiev stopped 20 of 22 shots in the win. Hart made 31 saves on 33 shots in the defeat.
The Flyers next return to the ice for Sunday's outdoor game at Lake Tahoe. The start time was moved up an hour by the NHL, so the game will begin at 2 p.m.
- PHI Nicolas Aube-Kubel (2) (Michael Raffl, Kevin Hayes) 0:59
- NYR Colin Blackwell (3) PP (Pavel Buchnevich, Anthony Bitetto) 3:24
- NYR Brendan Smith (1) (Artemi Panarin, Ryan Strome) 8:21
- PHI Joel Farabee (7) (Hayes, Sean Couturier) 18:46
Kevin Durso is Flyers insider for 97.3 ESPN and Flyers editor for SportsTalkPhilly.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.
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