Better With Popcorn

Flyers Collapse Late, Lose 6-4 in Ottawa


The Ottawa Senators don’t mind trailing late in games. In fact, after tonight’s victory they lead the league in wins when trailing after two periods with six.

Philadelphia (24-12-4) went into the final period with a 4-2 lead. Ottawa (22-15-6) was able to cut the deficit to one at the 3:11 mark of the third period. Senator forward Colin Greening came streaking down the left side of the ice and made a pass to Jason Spezza positioned on the opposite side of the crease.

Ilya Bryzgalov was in a position to make a play on the puck. Matt Carle was trailing Spezza, who put out his stick and deflected the puck rather than intercepting it and Bryzgalov was unable to adjust.

Even though the Senators are the “comeback kids” of the league this one is on the Flyers. An own goal, missed scoring opportunities, and sloppy handling is not the way to close out games.

Erik Karlsson scored the equalizer with 13:41 left in the game. Karlsson stripped Jaromir Jagr and bolted down the left side of the ice. With a Senator forward evenly skating with Karlsson on the right side Bryzgalov was unable to commit to Karlsson. Karlsson zip-lined a snapshot that went between the goalie’s legs.

With the score tied at four next 10 minutes had back-and-forth action. Jagr had the best opportunity to take the lead at the midpoint of the period when he intercepted a pass and had a one-on-one with Senator goaltender Craig Anderson. Jagr rushed the opportunity and pushed the puck to the left of the cage.

Anderson was able to finish the game strong, tallying 41 saves.

With five minutes remaining Andreas Lilja was called for holding. The Flyers penalty killing unit played well again tonight. Not only did they kill the penalty but with quick skating and accurate passing they were able to breakout well and get good shots on Anderson.

The Senators comeback turned into a lead when Filip Kuba hammered in a slapshot from up top with 1:11 remaining in regulation. Erick Kondra, positioned behind the Flyers’ net, wrapped the puck along the boards to Kuba. With every skater besides Kuba and Kondra positioned right in front of the net Bryzgalov didn’t stand a chance. The combination of being screened and some sort of deflection buried Philadelphia.

Ottawa opened the game with a Daniel Alfredsson goal 54 seconds into the game. The quick goal was an indication of the fast paced and high scoring opening period. Less than two minutes later Andrej Mesaros put a slapshot passed Anderson.

After a lengthy review, the refs ruled that Chris Neil scored at 8:25 giving the Senators a 2-1 lead. After a scrum in front of the crease Neil hit the puck into Bryzgalov’s glove. The review showed that both of Bryzgalov’s arms were in the net.

Marc-Andre Bourdon and Sean Couturier closed the first period out with goals for the Flyers giving them a 3-2 lead. The middle stanza saw Matt Read score his 13th goal of the season when he put in a rebound on a power play.

Bryzgalov finished with 30 saves.

Nick Foligno finished the game on an empty net goal with 45 seconds remaining.