The losing streak has been snapped with an offensive outburst from the Philadelphia Flyers at home. The home-ice advantage remains a welcoming trend against the Las Vegas Golden Knights as the Flyers remain undefeated against them at the Wells Fargo Center. Brian Elliott put together another good game in net, but this time it all accounted for his first win of the season. Marc-Andre Fleury didn’t get the start, but Oscar Dansk would for the Golden Knights. In a game where Joel Farabee and Mikhail Vorobyev got their first NHL starts, Philadelphia won, 6-2.
It was important for the Philadelphia Flyers to get out to a fast start. That was exactly the case in the first period as the Flyers would keep their powerplay resurgence alive against the best penalty kill in the league entering tonight’s game. Just over four minutes into the first period, the offense again traveled through Travis Konecny for a one-goal lead on the powerplay. Setting up that scoring opportunity was Konecny’s partner in crime, Oskar Lindblom, who has been a key playmaker on this Philadelphia offense. At the end of one period, the Flyers lead 1-0.
Continuing the offensive onslaught was Kevin Hayes who capitalized on a smooth pass behind the net from Scott Laughton for a backhand, wrap-around goal. Less than a minute later, just before the seven-minute mark, Michael Raffl put a shot on net that found a way in. The Philadelphia Flyers continued pressing onward on the powerplay as Matt Niskanen put a one-timer right by Oscar Dansk from Sean Couturier. Again, less than a minute removed from Niskanen’s goal, Oskar Lindblom buries a goal of his own from Raffl. Heading into the final frame of hockey, the Flyers lead the Las Vegas Golden Knights, 5-0.
Kudos to Brian Elliott in between the pipes for the Philadelphia Flyers tonight. He saved 33 of 35 shots. All of the goals for the Las Vegas Golden Knights came in the third period. Jonathan Marchessault and Reilly Smith were able to beat Elliott for a goal each, but the comeback effort was stomped out. Michael Raffl once again contributed to this win in the third period, scoring off a Chris Stewart assist. Word is that Oscar Dansk is still trying to get his jockstrap to fit properly because Raffl had him shook to the ice.
Back Down To Earth
This game was one that serves as not only a victory but a boost of morale. Heading into this contest, the Philadelphia Flyers were ranked dead last in scoring. Were they “bound to score” eventually? Yes, and that happened tonight against the Las Vegas Golden Knights and a goaltender that hadn’t started this season for them. While a win is a win, it needs to continue against starting goaltenders in the NHL.
Brian Elliott Was A Good Re-Sign
In an older piece, dating back to last year’s season, I stated that it would behoove the Philadelphia Flyers to bring back Brian Elliott to back up Carter Hart this season. So far, that proves to be right. In that role, Elliott has only surrendered two goals per appearance. For the price and availability of goaltenders on the market this past offseason, Alain Vigneault and company knew what was up. Hart has shown brilliance this season as much as he has shown he has struggled.
As young of a talent Carter Hart is, he has a few seasons to play before he is truly expected to hit his full stride as an “elite” goaltender. Until then, he is learning from one of the best back up goaltenders in the NHL. Patrick Roy is just about the only goaltender that I can think of who entered the league at Hart’s age and was elite out of the gate. Hart is 21 years old and I would say that his prime wouldn’t start until 24. To have that three-year window to develop at the NHL level as a starter is worth salivating over. Until then, cherish a good talent like Brian Elliott to balance Hart.
Lineup Changes, But Giroux Doesn’t
Alain Vigneault found a spot for Joel Farabee and Mikhail Vorobyev in the lineup tonight. While Farabee wasn’t able to notch his first point this season, Vorobyev was able to with an assist on Michael Raffl’s first goal of the night. The youth on this Philadelphia Flyers team is providing a spark, while the usual suspects caught fire. More offensive output tonight from Travis Konecny, Oskar Lindblom, and Matt Niskanen. Kevin Hayes caught back up with a goal of his own.
What the Philadelphia Flyers are missing is Claude Giroux. He is doing great things in the faceoff circle but only has contributed four assists this season. I’m used to seeing goals from the Flyers captain. He’s been more silent than deadly this season for Philadelphia, which isn’t the role he plays. Once this sleeping monster awakens, the Flyers could be a scary team. It just needs to happen soon.
Next, the Philadelphia Flyers are at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois visiting the Chicago Blackhawks. This game takes place on Thursday, October 24th at 8:30 pm.
Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports