Better With Popcorn

Devils Put Out Flyers Early Spark to Win, 5-3

The Flyers got lucky in the first. But they weren't so lucky in the second.

Mishaps in at the beginning of the first two periods set the tone for the Flyers in their 5-3 loss to New Jersey, Friday night.

Just 40 seconds into the game, Ilya Kovalchuk hooked up with Travis Zajac to put the Devils up 1-0. Zajac fired a wrister that snuck underneath the right arm of Ilya Bryzgalov to put the Devils on the board before a whole minute could come off the clock.

The Flyers had an answer for that quick strike though. Midway through the period, the Flyers turned a 1-0 defect into a 3-1 lead in a span of just 2:36.

While on the power play, Brayden Schenn put a shot on Martin Brodeur. Wayne Simmonds corralled the rebound and put it through Brodeur's legs to tie the game up, 1-1.

48 seconds later, Mike Knuble blasted a slap shot past Brodeur to give the Flyers a quick 2-1 lead. Another 48 seconds later, and Matt Read beat Brodeur to put the Flyers up 3-1 and force the Devils to use a timeout.

It was Read's sixth goal of the season, leading the team. Giroux's assist on the goal, his second of the game, gave him his first multi-point game since February 2, a span of six games.

The rest of the first period was fast and sloppy. New Jersey blew scoring chance after scoring chance, whether they found the iron or couldn't get ahold of the loose rebound and beat a scrambling Bryzgalov.

Both teams needed the first intermission to settle themselves down, but it was New Jersey who relocated their patience and they capitalized.

Just 26 seconds into the second period, Kovalchuk set up recently acquired Alexei Ponikarovsky with a breakaway, who beat Bryzgalov to cut the Flyers lead to 3-2. 

Later in the second period, Kovalchuk set up another teammate, this one Patrick Elias, to allow the Devils to tie the game back up, 3-3.

The third period was all Devils on the scoreboard again. David Clarkson netted his 10th goal of the season when he scored with 9:17 left in the game. Steve Bernier's empty netter sealed the game for the Flyers, who dropped their second game with the Devils in New Jersey.

After his mini meltdown, Brodeur tightened up for his seventh win of the season. He improved to 7-2-2 with his 25-save performance, stopping the last 17 shots he saw.