Flyers-Islanders observations: Losing streak reaches 7 with another OTL

Flyers-Islanders observations: Losing streak reaches 7 with another OTL


The losing streak rolls on.

The Flyers, after the Islanders fought back from a two-goal deficit, lost their seventh straight game Friday with a 5-4 overtime loss to New York at the Wells Fargo Center.

Nick Leddy scored the game-winner with 2:16 remaining in overtime.

Once again, the Flyers' top line did most of the heavy lifting as Sean Couturier, Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek each had multi-point games.

Giroux reached 600 career points, tying him with Rod Brind’Amour for eighth on the Flyers' all-time list.

It was the 11th straight season that the Flyers have played their Black Friday game on home ice.

• Once again, the Flyers coughed up a two-goal lead in the third period. Andrew Ladd somehow had a wide-open look right in front of Brian Elliott, as no one picked up Jordan Eberle behind the net. Brandon Manning and Travis Sanheim had net-front presence, but they couldn’t get a stick on Ladd or deflect the centering pass.

• Somehow Voracek got nailed in the third period for hooking Islanders captain John Tavares, who attempted to pull Voracek down on the same play. It elicited a strong reaction from the crowd. It appeared as if both players were fighting for the loose puck, but Tavares was the guilty party.

• After jumping out of the box after serving a matching minor, Travis Konecny caught a high-arcing pass and skated in on a backhanded breakaway, where he could have drawn a penalty shot as he was hooked from behind. Konecny nearly beat Thomas Greiss with a backhand and even had a rebound attempt.

• An unfortunate sequence for the Flyers, as Robert Hagg completely whiffed on a puck that was bouncing around on the ice. Eberle corralled it just to the right of Elliott, got his blade completely under the puck and elevated it just under the crossbar to cut the Flyers' lead to 4-3 in the third.

• Brandon Manning, in the third period, completely lost track of Jason Chimera, who flew down the left side of the ice on a pass from Casey Cizikas. The Islanders' fourth line was a real problem for the Flyers.

• A big blast from Giroux tied the game at 1-1, but it was a nice job by Hagg to step up on the play, which didn't allow the Islanders to break out of the zone. Somehow, the puck squirted right to Giroux, who blasted a one-time shot from the high slot that Greiss had no shot at. Last season, Giroux didn't score his 10th goal until Dec. 21.

• A bad goal given up by the Flyers saw the Islanders' fourth line tie the game at two. The play started when Scott Laughton left a backhanded pass a little short, allowing the Islanders to drive the play deep into the Flyers' end. Eventually, it was Cal Clutterbuck who redirected a shot from the point that Elliott had little shot of stopping.

• Danick Martel had a terrific one-handed pass to Laughton in the second period for a scoring chance down low. I wasn’t sure about Martel trying to squeeze through a pair of Islanders defenders, but somehow with his lightning-quick acceleration, he managed to knife his way through and make a play out of it.

• The Flyers broke a 2-2 tie on a delayed penalty call after Samuel Morin provided a big hit along the boards that allowed the puck to squirt free through the neutral zone. I liked the patience Giroux showed, as he waited for Shayne Gostisbehere to fill the slot and score from the high danger area. 

• The Flyers added another goal just 19 seconds later when Voracek caught Greiss by surprise with a hard-charging forecheck. Voracek had the presence of mind to quickly pass the puck in front to Couturier, who had nothing but a wide-open net after Greiss came out to play the puck.

• The Flyers scored all four goals in a span of 8:41, marking the second time this season they’ve scored four goals in a single period.

• A deflating ending to the opening period, as the Islanders scored with Mathew Barzal, the electrifying first-round pick of 2015, batting the puck out of the air that actually deflected off his pants, off the back of Elliott’s pads and into the net. Barzal was left alone with a breakdown in coverage between Gostisbehere and Morin, who were both caught on the left side of the ice. Valtteri Filppula nearly kept it out of the net.

• A solid opening penalty kill for the Flyers, who kept the Islanders around the perimeter for a good chunk of the two minutes. The Flyers came into this game having allowed seven power-play goals in their last three contests. Interestingly, Taylor Leier, who was part of the No. 1 PK unit with Laughton, wasn’t out there as Dave Hakstol has elected to switch up the personnel.

• A rough shift for Ivan Provorov midway through the first period, as he committed a bad turnover right on the stick to Scott Mayfield and was outworked by Brock Nelson, who worked the puck away from Provorov as the Islanders' third line gave the Flyers' top line some issues.

• Martel is a little bundle of energy and never appears to stop scrapping for pucks. That second line with Martel, Nolan Patrick and Simmonds played a strong opening period, which included Martel’s pass to Patrick that led to a Patrick penalty shot. However, the 5-foot-9 Martel got crushed by John Tavares along the boards. He needs to develop a little more grease in his game to avoid some of those big hits.

• Patrick elected to go backhand on Greiss on his penalty shot, but the Flyers' rookie didn’t commit until too late and Greiss wasn’t forced to move too far laterally. Patrick’s shot was about a foot wide of the left post.

Lines, pairings and scratches
Claude Giroux-Sean Couturier-Jakub Voracek
Danick Martel-Nolan Patrick-Wayne Simmonds
Michael Raffl-Valtteri Filppula-Travis Konecny
Taylor Leier-Scott Laughton-Jordan Weal

Ivan Provorov-Robert Hagg
Brandon Manning-Travis Sanheim
Samuel Morin-Shayne Gostisbehere

Brian Elliott
Michal Neuvirth

Scratched: Jori Lehtera, Radko Gudas, Dale Weise

Milestone night for Boyle sparks Devils' win

USA Today Images

Milestone night for Boyle sparks Devils' win

NEWARK, N.J. -- Brian Boyle broke a tie with his 100th career goal and added an empty-netter and an assist to help the New Jersey Devils beat the Dallas Stars 5-2 on Friday night.

Steven Santini, Blake Coleman and Nick Lappin also scored for the Devils, and Corey Schneider made 28 saves.

Martin Hanzal and Alexander Radulov scored for Dallas.

Midway through Stephen Johns' double-minor for high-sticking, Devils fans booed the team's power-play effort. Boyle responded by knocking in a rebound from the crease off of Will Butcher's shot to give the Devils a 3-2 lead with 3:21 left in the period.

Boyle assisted on Lappin's goal midway through the third period and completed the scoring with the empty-net goal (see full recap).

Nash, Rangers push past Kings
NEW YORK -- Rick Nash scored the tiebreaking goal with 3:27 remaining to lead the New York Rangers to a 4-2 victory over the Pacific Division-leading Los Angeles Kings on Friday night.

Chris Kreider, Kevin Hayes and J.T. Miller also scored to help New York win for the second time in five games (2-2-1). Henrik Lundqvist stopped 33 shots.

On the go-ahead goal, Nash stole the puck in the Kings' zone on the left side near the center line, drove into the left circle and beat Quick for his ninth of the season to give the Rangers their third lead of the game.

Miller added an empty-netter with 54 seconds remaining, sealing New York's 11th win in the last 13 at home (11-1-1) (see full recap).

Red Wings earn much-needed win
DETROIT -- Trevor Daley scored a tiebreaking, short-handed goal midway through the second period and the Detroit Red Wings went on to beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-1 on Friday night.

Jimmy Howard had 25 saves for the Red Wings. They had won only one of their previous 11 games.

The Maple Leafs lost their third straight, matching a season high. Toronto was without star center Auston Matthews for a fourth straight game because of an upper-body injury.

Curtis McElhinney stopped 26 shots for Toronto.

The Maple Leafs' Andreas Borgman opened the scoring 1:58 into the game.

Detroit's Danny DeKeyser pulled the Red Wings into a tie early in the first. Tomas Tatar's power-goal goal gave them a two-goal cushion they needed after losing the last two games after having a one-goal lead in the third period (see full recap).

Get in the holiday spirit with the Flyers

Philadelphia Flyers

Get in the holiday spirit with the Flyers

Before the Flyers get in the spirit for a sixth straight win on Saturday night, they’ll get you in the holiday spirit, too.

Prior to puck drop against the Stars on NBC Sports Philadelphia, the Flyers will put on a unique holiday-themed light show, which will illuminate the Wells Fargo Center and its ice.

The “Holiday Light Spectacular,” which is presented by the Rothman Institute at Jefferson, will be a 10-minute show starting at 7 p.m., as all fans will be given light-up bracelets to complement a fun Flyers holiday video featured on the ice.

“This show is a new, can’t-miss holiday attraction in Philadelphia and one that we hope becomes an annual tradition for us,” Shawn Tilger, the Flyers’ executive vice president, chief operating officer, alternate governor, said in a release by the team. “This show is in line with the holiday staples of the region, and we’re excited to bring entertainment of this caliber to Flyers fans here on Saturday night.”

For fans with youngsters, Santa Claus will also be in attendance, taking free photos on the main concourse.