Stanley Cup Playoffs (1st Round): Sabres vs. Flyers – Game 2

Published on April 16th, 2011

Boosh makes the save | Source: Andrew King

Flyers Edge Sabres 5-4

by Mike del Tufo

Saturday, April 16, 2011
The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Buffalo Sabres 5-4 in Game 2 in a surprisingly high-scoring affair after there was just one goal in Game 1.  The Flyers got goals from 5 different players and were able to close out the game after taking the lead heading into the 3rd period.

Ryan Miller started in net for the Sabres and Sergei Bobrovsky for the Flyers. 

Flyers forward combinations:
Briere-Leino-Hartnell
Carter-Giroux-JVR
Richards-Versteeg-Nodl
Betts-Powe-Carcillo

Flyers defensemen pairings:
Timonen-Coburn
Syvret-Carle
Meszaros-O’Donnell

Facing a must-win game, the Flyers came out in the 1st period a little flat and slow.  At 4:00, however, Flyers winger Claude Giroux got the Flyers on the board in the series with a great individual effort.  Scott Hartnell took a roughing penalty at 4:14 for the 1st penalty of the game.  The Sabres got a 5-on-3 at 5:52 when defenseman Kimmo Timonen was called for hooking.  The Sabres converted at 6:43 when Thomas Vanek banged it into an open-net.  At 6:45, Hartnell dropped the gloves with Paul Gaustad but took the worst of it.  The Flyers fed off of it though and scored at 7:20 when Dan Carcillo knocked in a rebound.  The Sabres got another power-play at 9:06 when Darroll Powe was called for cross-checking.  The Sabres banged away at the side of the net at 9:43 and Vanek slipped it in to tie the game 2-2.  The Flyers got their 1st power-play at 10:18 when Andrej Sekera was called for an interference minor.  They once again came up empty with the man-advantage.  At 12:30, the Sabres got a 3-on-1 odd-man breakaway and Sekera smacked it in to give the Sabres a 3-2 lead.  Brian Boucher then replaced Bobrovsky in goal.  Flyers re-tied it 3-3 at 13:14 when JVR put it in.  The Flyers got another power-play at 16:02 when Nathan Gerbe took a double-minor for roughing while Giroux took a single roughing minor.  The Flyers then got a 5-on-3 when Tyler Myers was called for interference at 16:45.  They recorded a total of 3 shots on the two penalties. 

At 2:57 of the 2nd period, Myers took a tripping minor to give the Flyers a power-play.  The Flyers recorded no shots during this.  The Sabres quickly took another penalty at 5:18 when they were called for too many men on the ice.  The Flyers again failed to convert and recorded just one shot.  Flyer Jeff Carter was called for hooking at 7:13 and that was followed soon after at 8:01 with a tripping minor on Sabres Jason Pominville.  At 9:22, the Flyers got another 5-on-3 when Gaustad was called for holding the stick.  They had a number of prime scoring chances but remained snake-bit on the power-play.  The Sabres took yet another penalty at 12:25 when Steve Montador got the gate for tripping.  Ville Leino finally got the Flyers a power-play goal at 13:36 to give them the lead.  A Hartnell shot went off Briere’s skate and in at 15:27 to give Flyers 5-3 lead.  The Flyers were 1 for 9 on the power-play through 2 periods of play and led in shots 24 to 16. 

Cody McCormick of the Sabres scored at 6:12 of the 3rd period to cut the Flyers’ lead in half.  The Flyers then got their 10th power-play of the game at 9:02 when Sekera was called for high-sticking.  They recorded one shot and failed to score.  The Flyers went into a defensive shell much of the last half of the period.  Unlike most of the last month of the regular season, the Flyers were strong in preventing the Sabres from mounting much of an offense to get the equalizing goal.  The two teams head to Buffalo tied at 1-1.

Flyers Head Coach Peter Laviolette on bringing in Boucher  after Bob had given up 3 goals said, “I think that Brian [Boucher] has had so many times where he has come in and bailed us out. Like I said, he’s a veteran goaltender that has a calmness about him. There was a lot of energy and emotion in the game and especially in the first period. The building was great, both benches were live, and it was just a lively game. He can come in and really settle things down for us, and that’s exactly what he did. He has done it in the past and it was really great to see him do it tonight.”

The last time the Flyers had 10 power plays in a game was Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals vs Buffalo in 1998 (4/24/98).  They went 1 for 10 as they did in this game.
Game 3 is Monday at 7pm in Buffalo.

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