Coming out of the NHL All-Star break, would the Philadelphia Flyers spin their wheels in the mud or continue to put together a winning streak? Unfortunately, the result was the former.
Before they go to Detroit, Philadelphia played host tonight. They were drained of energy and lapsed mentally on home ice. Here’s how it all went down:
Daniel Briere is in the building. Here, he’s sitting next to Chuck Fletcher (on the right.) It’s not the only change to the Philadelphia Flyers. Darryl Williams will manage the penalty kill, meaning John Torchetti oversees the powerplay. The penalty kill had an early opportunity to set the tone.
Sanheim went to the box for holding after the Detroit Red Wings started knocking on the crease. Tyler Bertuzzi scored the deflection goal off a shot by Dylan Larkin. Immediately, the Flyers responded. Isaac Ratcliffe scored his first NHL goal off a deflection from Zack MacEwen.
Jeff Blashill challenged the play for goaltender interference on Ratcliffe. The ruling stood.
“I don’t think any of the times I drew it up, it was going off my pants.”Isaac Ratcliffe; 2/9/2022
More of the same followed. Lucas Raymond stayed with a series of rebounds given up by Hart, eventually working past him to score. Sanheim made up for his earlier penalty, slamming an opportunity past Nedeljkovic to tie the game, 2-2.
Max Willman almost scored towards the end of the first period, but the puck didn’t completely cross the goal line.
Following a back and fourth period, the Philadelphia Flyers needed to keep pressing the momentum. Unfortunately, they found themselves in the defensive zone too often and couldn’t convert special team opportunities.
Pius Suter separated from Sanheim in the slot. The Detroit Red Wings didn’t have any issue with occupying the crease, as they proved in the first period. At point-blank range, Suter beat Hart to give the Red Wings a 3-2 lead.
Later in the period, Robby Fabbri scored on a 3v2 rush; 4-2. Akin to the opening period, Scott Laughton responded quickly, closing the deficit to 4-3. Scoring most recently, it was up to the Flyers to pace the third period. Philadelphia leads in most team metrics but trailed in shots, 26-19.
Down a goal, the Philadelphia Flyers didn’t begin the third period with the jolt they needed. The Detroit Red Wings continued to sustain the puck, winning in the faceoff circle more often than they were. The possessions earned from faceoffs kept the Flyers on their defensive heels.
“It seemed like we were watching too much tonight.”Scott Laughton; 2/9/2022
Joseph Veleno dropped a pass back to Givani Smith in transition. Smith placed the puck perfectly through the five-hole, extending the lead to 5-3 with half of the final period remaining. To this point, Philadelphia only accounted for one official shot on goal. Shot volume continues to be an issue, though a “shoot first mentality” was the mantra earlier this season.
The Flyers had quality scoring chances. With 3:36 remaining, trailed in shots on goal, 33-21.
Vladislav Namestnikov converted on the empty net, finishing off Philadelphia, 6-3.
Next, the Philadelphia Flyers have a rematch against the Detroit Red Wings at the Little Caesars Arena on Saturday, February 12th. Faceoff is at noon.
(Photo by Gavin Baker/Icon Sportswire)