Flyers’ Offense Overcomes Alex Ovechkin’s Great Game to Top Capitals

Coots 2

After a dreaded week of hockey against the Bruins, the Flyers needed to get back on the right track. In a Sunday matinee matchup against the Washington Capitals, the Flyers did just that.

Reigning Selke award winner Sean Couturier was finally back in the Flyers’ lineup and tallied two goals. Scott Laughton scored a trio for a hattrick. Travis Sanheim was out unknowingly, but Phil Myers also returned and found himself on the top pairing with Ivan Provorov. Carter Hart made the start after dealing with some back spasms the past couple of days.

The Capitals’ top line may have combined for 11 total points amongst themselves, however, the Flyers’ depth conquered. With all this said, the Flyers edged out the Washington Capitals in a 7-4 rout.

First Period

Flyers’ Looked… Okay

Sean Couturier made his presence known early, creating a couple of turnovers leading to scoring opportunities. He eased himself back into game action, playing about five minutes, winning 2 of his 5 faceoffs, and recording a hit. The team was active defensively. They didn’t give the Caps many easy zone entries, locking up the blue line and making their opposition earn it. They limited odd-man rushes. Carter Hart looked sharp himself, saving 13 shots amongst the abundance of the great scoring opportunities Washington had.

Offensively, the Flyers’ forecheck looked sound. Their zone entries were much smoother. Forechecking wise, they looked to have one guy pressing hard, which led to the puck getting to a Flyers’ stick in most situations. After going down 2-0, the Flyers had a great zone entry by Erik Gustafsson, leading to Scott Laughton cleaning up the trash.

However, with all of the positivity aside, two hiccups came during the opening period prior to that Laughton goal. Nic Aube-Kubel served a too many men penalty halfway into the first. Alex Ovechkin did not take long to capitalize on this, absolutely sniping Hart over the left shoulder.

Not too long after this, Phil Myers was welcomed back into the lineup after getting absolutely walked by Alex Ovechkin. This lead to a Tom Wilson backdoor goal.

Overall, this wasn’t the worst we’ve seen this year from Philadelphia. The Caps had their chances, but it wasn’t as bad as the scoresheet shows stats wise. The Flyers have shown that they believe in quality over quantity, as the Caps just funnel everything to the net.

Second Period

The second period was much better for the Flyers. Early on, Gustafsson made some great defensive plays. This led to some offensive pressure for Philly, in which caused some disruption deep in the Caps’ zone. Eventually, Laughton found the puck on his stick again for his second of the game.

However, it did not take long for Ovi to continue leaving his mark. Ovechkin would go onto blast one from the blue line that trickled behind Hart. Carter will likely want this one back…

This period continued to be full of action early. Nic Dowd would take Kevin Hayes down in what was called interference. The Flyers wouldn’t capitalize on the powerplay, but Robert Hagg would quickly BLAST one into the net to tie this one at three.

After about ten quieter minutes of game time, James van Riemsdyk continued his absolute hot start to the season. He would kick on the jets to take the edge on Chara and snipe Vanecek. This goal would leave to a Capital’s goaltending change as well, bringing in Craig Anderson.

Again, though, it wouldn’t take the Caps’ top line to respond. Nicklas Backstrom found himself alone down low and deceived Hart and put it in the net with a minute remaining in the period. This game would head into the third period tied at four.

Third Period


The Flyers kept their momentum going. A mere 31 seconds into the final frame, Sean Couturier gave the Flyers a 5-4 lead, sneaking one through Anderson’s five-hole.

Coots’ comeback tour didn’t end there. He had a perfect cut to the net, which led to a Zdeno Chara double minor for high sticking. This may have been the most uneventful four minutes of the game, but at least the Capitals’ didn’t score. The Flyers had just a single shot on the extended powerplay with little to no zone time.

This provided the Caps with a ton of momentum. Hart had to stand tall for the majority of the third period’s first half. Eventually, Scott Laughton would finish his hat trick to make this game 6-4.

Sean Couturier would go on to record his second of the game as well, tallying the empty netter from about 150 feet away. The Flyers rallied and fought to have five of the last six goals in the game.

Up Next

The Flyers will stay in Washington until Tuesday night and take on the Capitals again. Puck drop is slated for 6 PM EST.

Photo Credit: Alex Mcintyre