Flyers Top 10 Plays of 2019-20…So Far
With no games actively happening, there has been a lot of time to reflect on what has happened so far this season. The NHL has been releasing videos of the Top 10 plays for each team so far this season. The Flyers video was released a couple of weeks ago and here is a look at the list.
1. Carter Hart’s Glove Save vs. New Jersey - Oct. 9, 2019
It’s amazing to think that the season-defining play came in just the second game of the season, but it did. Carter Hart has been at the forefront of the Flyers successes this season, the stability in net helping the Flyers to not only comfortably fall into the playoff picture, but also challenge for a division title.
So to the actual play and it’s easy to forget that it comes in a very crucial spot in the game. Late in the second period, the Flyers were holding onto a one-goal lead and had to kill off a full two-minute 5-on-3 with Sean Couturier and Kevin Hayes in the box.
Rookie Jack Hughes appeared to have the perfect setup, feeding a pass across the slot to Taylor Hall waiting on the backdoor at the right circle. Hart slid across to his left and got his glove on the one-timer, sending the crowd into a frenzy. Hart finished off the game with 25 saves to complete his first career shutout.
2. Ivan Provorov’s Game-Winning Goal vs. Montreal - Nov. 30, 2019
Entering the final game of November, the Flyers were on a three-game winning streak and trying to withstand a third-period push from the Canadiens and managed to get the game to overtime.
Cue Ivan Provorov. In the first minute of overtime, Provorov started from behind his own net and led a rush up ice. After working around one Montreal defender, he entered the zone and had forward Max Domi in his sights, going between the legs and regaining control on the backhand before switching to the forehand and beating Keith Kinkaid with a shot to the short side off the post and in to give the Flyers a 4-3 overtime win.
That victory capped off a 10-2-4 month of November, tying a franchise record with 24 points in the month. This was one of the first signs that this team had the ability to string together some successful results and go on a winning streak that helped move them up the standings.
3. Kevin Hayes’ Shorthanded Breakaway Goal vs. Columbus - Oct. 26, 2019
One of the Flyers’ biggest offseason acquisitions has been Kevin Hayes, and he made a big impact in one of his earliest games in late October.
The Flyers trailed the Columbus Blue Jackets, 4-2, in the third and got goals by Shayne Gostisbehere and James van Riemsdyk to erase the deficit. Shortly after tying the game, Sean Couturier took a tripping penalty and put the Flyers on the penalty kill with six minutes to play. Just seconds into the PK, Hayes made the play that put the Flyers ahead for good.
Hayes intercepts a pass from Cam Atkinson and starts the other way, working through the hook of Ryan Murray and going in on a breakaway. His first shot on the backhand was stopped by Joonas Korpisalo, but Hayes stayed with it and jammed the puck in on the forehand to give the Flyers a 5-4 lead in what would become a 7-4 victory.
4. Carter Hart’s Robbery of Mikko Rantanen vs. Colorado - Dec. 11, 2019
If Hart’s save on Hall is at the top of the list, this is a close second on his highlight reel. Against one of the most talented offensive players in the league in Mikko Rantanen, Hart goes across the crease and sprawls out to make a spectacular glove save.
This game was the first of a three-game losing streak on the road for the Flyers, but Hart largely held the Flyers in this game until late in the second period when Colorado was able to open up a 2-0 lead. Still, Hart’s ability to make a big highlight-reel save against one of the top lines in hockey was something to behold and showed what kind of chops the 21-year-old has in big moments.
5. Derek Grant’s Skate Pass to Kevin Hayes vs. Washington - March 4, 2020
Derek Grant was brought in at the trade deadline and made an impact in the lineup quickly. In one of the biggest games of the season, the Flyers were going against the Metro-leading Washington Capitals with a chance to close the gap from three points to one. The newcomer made a subtle and skillful play that set up a goal.
Grant is positioned in front of the net and reaches out with his right skate to redirect a pass from Nicolas Aube-Kubel back across the slot. Kevin Hayes was waiting right there for the slam dunk to finish off the goal and give the Flyers a 2-1 lead in a game they would go on to win, 5-2.
6. Travis Konecny’s Sweet Backhand vs. Chicago - Oct. 4, 2019
This will become a trend on this list, but you have to start with Travis Konecny’s first game of the season where he posted a pair of goals. His second goal definitely belongs on this highlight reel.
Konecny takes a pass from Scott Laughton in neutral zone and enters the attacking zone with speed. He dangles around Duncan Keith and goes to the backhand, lifting a shot over Corey Crawford to give the Flyers a 3-1 lead. Konecny’s goal in that game held up as the game-winner until the final three minutes of the game in a season-opening 4-3 win for the Flyers over Chicago.
7. Travis Konecny’s Nice Move on Fleury vs. Vegas - Jan. 2, 2020
Travis Konecny has shown in the past that he can bring the speed and skill when the time is right and he did just that in Vegas.
Konecny gains control of the puck in the neutral zone, charges in with speed, goes around Nate Schmidt and cuts across the crease and beats Marc-Andre Fleury.
While this goal didn’t help the Flyers snap a losing streak on what was their worst stretch of games all season, it came in the days just after Konecny was named to his first All-Star Game, further validating that this is a young star in the making.
8. James van Riemsdyk’s First Goal of the Season vs. Chicago - Oct. 24, 2019
The Flyers were really trying to survive the third period in Chicago before Kevin Hayes scored off a turnover to make it 3-1 Flyers and restore a two-goal lead. James van Riemsdyk put it away.
van Riemsdyk steals the puck from Erik Gustafsson and goes in alone on Robin Lehner, using a nifty deke to tuck in his first goal of the season and essentially seal a Flyers win in Chicago.
9. Travis Konecny’s Nice Set-up to Claude Giroux vs. Carolina - Nov. 21, 2019
Konecny has put together a career season and a lot of it has to do with his ability to set up teammates. This may be his best of the season.
Konecny takes the puck behind the net and reverses to Claude Giroux, who follows the play and goes hard to the net. Konecny makes the play as if he has eyes on the back of his head, feeding Giroux with a perfect drop pass to the open side of the net as netminder Petr Mrazek follows Konecny behind the net and vacates the post.
This was the first goal of what would be a 5-3 win for the Flyers in Carolina, another early test they passed on the road against a divisional opponent.
10. Morgan Frost’s First NHL Goal vs. Florida - Nov. 19, 2019
There was a lot of excitement when the Flyers top forward prospect Morgan Frost made the transition to the NHL. In his first game, he didn’t disappoint, showcasing his highlight-reel skill.
Frost gets the puck below the goal line, cuts in front and goes upstairs with a backhand in close quarters, lifting it over Sergei Bobrovsky for his first NHL goal.
While the result didn’t go in the Flyers favor, it was the first of what is sure to be many goals in the future for Frost.
While we wait for hockey to return and more highlights to be made, you can start by watching all of the highlights from this list in the video below.
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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