Hayes, Konecny Carry Flyers to Win Over Sharks
The Flyers used Monday's trade deadline to add two new faces to the roster. But their biggest acquisition on the ice remains the second-line center who is rapidly approaching setting a career mark in goals.
Kevin Hayes scored two goals and had a three-point game as the Flyers extended their winning streak to four games with a 4-2 win over the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday night at Wells Fargo Center.
For the second straight game, the Flyers wasted no time getting on the board. Brent Burns got called for a hooking penalty just 26 seconds into the game and on the power play, the Flyers were able to strike. Matt Niskanen took a shot that left a big rebound for James van Riemsdyk. van Riemsdyk showed great awareness, putting a pass back in front of the net to Nicolas Aube-Kubel, who scored into an open net to make it 1-0 at 1:32.
The Sharks controlled the rest of the period though. They were able to get the game tied at 6:30 as a shot from Jacob Middleton left a big rebound that Joel Kellman deposited to make it 1-1. The Sharks trailed, 6-0, in shots three minutes into the game, but fired the next 13 at Carter Hart.
Through 20 minutes, shots were 15-8 San Jose.
The Flyers thought they had a late goal, as good work by Hayes and Travis Konecny set up Scott Laughton for what looked like a sure goal into an open net. Laughton released a shot that hit off the crossbar and then the post, staying out of the net. As the first period came to a close, the Flyers headed to the penalty kill for the second time as newcomer Derek Grant went to the box for slashing to start the second period.
The Flyers killed off the penalty and then got a chance off a rush that turned into a goal. Following a close entry, Konecny got a pass to Laughton on the wing. Laughton centered for Hayes, who buried the scoring chance to make it 2-1 with his 20th goal of the season. San Jose challenged for offside, but the call on the ice was confirmed.
As the period approached the midway point, the Flyers padded their lead with an opportunity off an odd-man rush. The Sharks were generating some pressure, but Hayes was able to exit the zone as a Shark went down and gave the Flyers a two-on-one. Hayes passed across to Konecny, who cut in and beat Aaron Dell through the five-hole to make it 3-1 with his 22nd goal of the season.
Through two periods, the Sharks held a 25-18 lead in shots.
Early in the third, the Flyers added more insurance. Laughton put one toward the net and Hayes was able to chop at it and knock it on goal. The chance leaked through Dell and barely across the line for Hayes' second goal of the game and 21st of the season.
The Sharks picked up another goal midway through the period. Off a failed clear, Noah Gregor fired a one-timer past Hart to cut the Flyers lead to two.
That was as close as the margin would get, as the Flyers held San Jose to just three shots in the final 20 minutes.
Hart finished the game with 26 saves in the win. Dell stopped 23 of 27 shots.
Konecny joined Hayes in finishing with three points in the win. Laughton also had a pair of assists.
Nate Thompson played 12:39 in the game with one shot, two hits and a blocked shot. Grant played 12:38 in addition to the penalty while finishing with three hits and a blocked shot.
The Flyers get back on the ice on Friday night as they host the New York Rangers at 7 p.m.
- PHI Nicolas Aube-Kubel (6) PP (James van Riemsdyk, Matt Niskanen) 1:32
- SJ Joel Kellman (2) (Jacob Middleton, Tim Heed) 6:30
- PHI Kevin Hayes (20) (Scott Laughton, Travis Konecny) 2:51
- PHI Konecny (22) (Hayes) 9:41
- PHI Hayes (21) (Laughton, Konecny) 3:43
- SJ Noah Gregor (2) (Marcus Sorensen) 8:18
Kevin Durso is Flyers insider for 97.3 ESPN and Flyers editor for SportsTalkPhilly.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.