Tavares Nets Hat Trick in Flyers Loss to Leafs
For just the second time this season, the Flyers had the all-important first goal of the game on Wednesday night in Toronto. Ultimately, it did not equate to a successful night.
Toronto quickly erased the deficit with two goals in the first period and added two more in the third in the Flyers 5-2 loss to the Maple Leafs.
The first period features multiple penalties and after the Flyers killed off two Toronto power plays, they were able to strike for the game's first goal at 13:09. Joel Farabee fired a one-timer off a feed from Travis Konecny for his third goal of the season to make it 1-0.
The Flyers couldn't take advantage of their only power play of the period seconds later. Toronto got their third power play of the period shortly after and took advantage. Auston Matthews was stopped on a great scoring chance from the slot by Felix Sandstrom, but was able to get his own rebound and score his fourth goal of the season to even things at one with 3:20 left in the period.
Less than two minutes later, John Tavares unleashed a one-timer from deep in the zone that hit the stick of Konecny on the way in, beating Sandstrom to make it a 2-1 game with 1:27 remaining in the period.
The Flyers had four power plays in the second period with a chance to find the equalizer. They struggled and could not capitalize in the middle frame, keeping the margin at 2-1. Through 40 minutes, shots were 30-15 Toronto.
It took less than three minutes for the Leafs to extend the lead. A fortunate bounce out of traffic in the slot went to Zach Aston-Reese, who was wide open to bury the chance and make it 3-1 with his first goal of the season.
On their sixth power-play chance of the game, the Flyers finally cashed in. Owen Tippett scored off a rush short-side on Ilya Samsonov to cut the lead to to one again.
But any thought of a comeback was erased when Tavares scored his second of the game with 7:18 to play in the third.
Tavares capped off his big night by getting the hat trick with a power-play goal with 4:37 remaining.
Samsonov made 23 saves in the win. Sandstrom made 39 saves on 44 shots in the loss.
Konecny had two assists for the Flyers in the loss. Tavares had four points, while Matthews, Mitch Marner, and Morgan Rielly each had two-point games.
The Flyers close out the road trip on Saturday night when they face the Ottawa Senators at 7 p.m.
- PHI Joel Farabee (3) (Travis Konecny, Travis Sanheim) 13:09
- TOR Auston Matthews (4) PP (John Tavares, Mitch Marner) 16:40
- TOR Tavares (5) (William Nylander, Morgan Rielly) 18:33
- No Scoring
- TOR Zach Aston-Reese (1) (Denis Malgin, David Kampf) 2:49
- PHI Owen Tippett (2) PP (Konecny, Scott Laughton) 7:01
- TOR Tavares (6) (Marner, Victor Mete) 12:42
- TOR Tavares (7) PP (Matthews, Rielly) 15:23
Kevin Durso is Flyers insider for 97.3 ESPN and Flyers editor for SportsTalkPhilly.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.