Devils Upend Flyers 6-4

Published on February 4th, 2012

Flyers Brayden Schenn prior to his scuffle with Devils Ilya Kovalchuk (in background)

by Mike del Tufo

Saturday February 4, 2012
The New Jersey Devils defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 6-4 in an unusual game that saw the Flyers try and battle back from a 6-0 deficit.

This was the 4th time this season these two teams played.  The Flyers went 2-0-1 in the 1st three.  They play next on March 11 in New Jersey.

Forwards Danny Briere and James van Riemsdyk remained on the injured list recovering from concussions.  For this game, Johan Hedberg started in net for the Devils and Sergei Bobrovsky for the Flyers. 

Flyers forward combinations:

Flyers defensemen pairings:

Defenseman Kurtis Foster scored a 5-on-3 power-play goal to give Devils 1-0 lead at 3:05 of 1st period.  The Devils then added two late period goals.  They got a short-handed goal by Ilya Kovalcuk at 19:03.  Flyers Claude Giroux looked to have been taken down just prior to this short-handed rush for the Devils.  The referees made no call however.  Dainius Zubrus then made it 3-0 for the Devils as he scored just prior to the buzzer.  It was a terrible period for the Flyers that saw them leave the ice for the intermission full of frustration mainly due to non-calls by the referees.

The Devils quickly added two more goals in the 2nd period as Zach Parise scored at 0:38 and Alexei Ponikarovsky at 1:37.  Foster then scored his 2nd of the game at 8:22 on a 5-on-3 power-play to put Devils up 6-0.  Bob was then replaced in net by Bryzgalov.  The Flyers could do nothing right in this period.  The non-call at the end of the 1st period took the Flyers off of their game and they were unable to recover. 

The Flyers finally got on the board in the 3rd period.  Wayne Simmonds had the goal at 3:59.  It gave them a little life and they started to skate a little better.  Jaromir Jagr scored at 9:23 to pull the Flyers to within 6-2.  Finally at 11:38, the frustration erupted between the two teams.  Kovalchuk dropped the gloves with Brayden Schenn and completed the Gordie Howe hat-trick.  Giroux then scored a power-play goal at 12:40 and Jakub Voracek added another at 13:31 to make it 6-4.  It was Giroux’s 20th goal of the season.  The Devils settled down after that and were able to close out the game for a 6-4 victory.  The Flyers out-shot the Devils 24 to 1 in this period.

Scott Hartnell on the loss said, “It’s frustrating.  Those first two periods I was embarrassed to be a Philadelphia Flyer.  We came out with no jam, no intensity…It’s tough to start, you know, the beginning of the game on a 5-on-3 they score, and they score another power play goal….it’s a little disheartening but that third period, we can take some positive out of it.  We were flying.  That’s the way we have to play to win games and we wanted to win that second period and I don’t think we thought we’d be that close but we got to carry that over into tomorrow.”

The Flyers next game is tomorrow in New York City vs. the Rangers.

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