Flyers Squander Lead, Fall to Ducks
A 2-1 lead going into the third period of play vanished into thin air as the visiting Anaheim Ducks defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 3-2 on Tuesday night.
After being outshot by a 16-6 margin in a Ducks-dominated third period, Anaheim's Kyle Palmieri scored on a breakaway and on a beautiful tip-in to put his team on top. Palmieri had just one goal this season coming into tonight.
It looked like smooth sailing for the Flyers, coming off of a two-game winning streak and up 2-0 on a team with nine wins on the year after one period of play. However, another example of leading after two periods and failing to show up late did them in.
Several turnovers also killed any momentum, including three of them leading to all three Anaheim goals.
"They had good pressure on us, but we were soft at times," head coach Craig Berube said. "We've been pretty good for the last two, three games with not turning over the puck. Tonight was the opposite."
Matt Read started things off perfectly just under four minutes in. A no-look feed by Wayne Simmonds found Read in front, who jammed away at a loose puck, slamming it past Ducks starter Jonas Hiller to make it 1-0.
Vincent Lecavalier's hot streak also continued as he tallied on a Flyers power play, making it 2-0. It was Lecavalier's fourth goal in two games.
However, those comeback demons showed. In a simliar game against Vancouver, a third period lead crumbled. The result ended up being the exact same—a 3-2 comeback loss. It was just the fifth game the Flyers had scored first, or in many cases, have had a lead of any point.
A late too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty with just 2:40 to go in the contest could have been the answer, but a dismal Flyers power play failed them in the end.
"We just stopped skating," Simmonds said of the letdown.
That point held true after Palmieri's second goal. An extended offensive zone by Anaheim killed over one minute of clock, helping Hiller at one end.
Steve Mason, once again, played solid in net, stopping 34 shots. Mason kept the Flyers in the game throughout until a huge letdown in the third period.
Andrew Cogliano started the scoring for Anaheim after a missed Ryan Getzlaf shot caromed off the end boards and directly on his stick. Getzlaf corraled a horrific pass by Nicklas Grossmann in the neutral zone and caught the Flyers defense flat-footed.
This loss plays a huge part in what is now the Flyers' worst season start in franchise history. They will have to try and find a way to not only play 60 minutes, but win games to get back into the race to the top in a subpar Metropolitan Division.
That fight will have to continue Friday in a crucial Metro matchup against the Washington Capitals.