Philly Phaithful
Better With Popcorn

Flyers Have a Hell Of a Time in NJ Lose 2-1 In OT SO


The Flyers entered this game with the Devils knowing that NJ was without some key players; Jamie Langenbrunner, Martin Bordeur and Patrik Elias just to name a few.

It did not show in the first period as the Devils controlled most of the play. Thanks to a four minute double minor for high sticking to Scott Hartnell. It was just another bad penalty and lack of body control on his part.

The Flyers would go on to kill that power play but not after a great glove save by Brian Boucher on a one timer from Ilya Kovalchuk. Then 11:49 seconds into the first Adam Mair struck first for the Devils with a snap shot from low on the right circle.

It looked like Boucher's positioning was off as he was back in the net and over compensating on the short side, the shot beat him off the post to the long side. It was one he would like to have back.

The Flyers took a while after that to regain some control of the game, they finished the period strong but trailing 1-0. Danny Briere and Ville Leino saw just 3:00 minutes of action in the first with only Jody Shelley having less. Flyers were outshot 11-10.

The second period would be a scoreless one and NJ once again controlled the play. The Flyers had some chances as did the NJ Devils, most notably the a shot by Brian Rolston that rang off the post with under a minute left in the period.

Kovalchuk for the Devils was flying around in the second period and controlling the puck as Nodl was a standout for the Flyers that period. Play was sloppy with the Devils ending the second period with 15 turnovers at that point in the game. The Flyers outshooting the Devils at this point 21-18.

The third period saw Ville Leino crank one off the post. The Devils not being able to put the Flyers away and the Flyers and Boucher keeping the game to a one goal defecit until Matt Green went to the box for hooking at 7:49.

The Flyers would be going on the power play for the second time this game. The Flyers came into the game 1-32 on the power play and failed on ther only chance in the first.

That would all change as Danny Briere would try a shot from low on the goal line that would beat Hedberg on the short side. The shot rang the post then hit Hedberg in his rear and trickled in to tie the game at one a piece.

Kovalchuk would still lead the Devils rushes up ice and created some offensive chances for himself. The Flyers also would put some pressure on the rest of the third period. The game would end in a 1-1 tie and headed into overtime. The Flyers would outshoot the Devils in the thrid 14-5.

The overtime was nonstop action with the Flyers getting some early chances. The best chance came from Ilya Kovalchuk as he found himself one on one with Boucher and fanned on the shot.

Kovalchuk had another great opportunity but his shot was deflected out of play by Chris Pronger who hustled back into the play to get there just in time to get his stick on it. Time expired in overtime with kovalchuk getting one more shot on Boucher and Richards throwing the puck towards Hedberg. The shots in OT were 3-3 and 41-25 for the game in favor of the Flyers.

The game was heading to a shootout for the Flyers for the second straight game. After four straight saves by the goalies the Devils would take the Shootout 2-1 as Zherdev scored for the Flyers, Jason Arnott tied it a one and Travis Zajac would win it.

Analysis

The Flyers did not put forth the effort needed to beat a team missing three of their key players. The Devils took the play to the Flyers for most of the game and Iyla Kovalchuk really stood out in this game for the Devils. He carried that team on his back all day and was very noticeable out there.

Now the Flyers have lost two games in a row in an OT Shootout, both games the Flyers lost the lead in the shootout. I fully expected a better effort and some aggressive play as a result of the game Friday against Calgary.

That did not happen today and although the Flyers grabbed a point in each of the losses they also surrendered one too. These games will be the ones looked at when they are fighting for home ice advantage in the playoffs.

Boucher played a good game today, aside from the first goal where he was out of position and was unable to cut down the angle.

To their credit the Devils played this game like someone's job was on the line and it proved to be too much to handle for the Flyers. The Flyers will have three days to take these two losses in and get back on track.

Standout Players

Johan Hedberg, Brian Boucher, Ilya Kovalchuk

Twitter/@Wrecktangled

4 Comments

Alicia Sprenkle's picture

Today was one of those games that the Flyers should have taken advantage of. As you said, the Devils were missing a good amount of key players and they really have been having an all around bad season. The Flyers should have gotten 2 points today, but because of their lackluster first and second period they didn't deserve 2 points. But even after coming back to tie it and take the lead in the shootout, they could have and should have stolen the extra point.

George Prax's picture

I think TSN's Pun of the Day is better than your pun. Sorry Larry Tongue

Larry DAngelo's picture

That's why they make the big bucks Cash . I actually had Devil in place of Hell but thought Hell was a more powerful word to describe that loss.

Stacy Podelski's picture

I am interested in seeing if the Devils can keep up the positive momentum that they have so far. If they keep playing well they may actually have a chance of some success this year.