OTTAWA, Ontario — It would seem as if the Flyers are for real.
Since halting a 10-game losing streak Dec. 4 against the Calgary Flames, the Flyers have posted a 25-8-3 record, including Saturday’s 5-3 win over the Ottawa Senators.
They’ve also gone from last in the Metropolitan Division to a tie for first.
Saturday, Brandon Manning led the offense with a goal and two assists while Claude Giroux contributed a goal and a helper.
Robert Hagg and Ivan Provorov also scored for the Flyers (33-19-10), who have now won five straight.
The Senators got goals from Mike Hoffman, Ryan Dzingel and Matt Duchene a day after shipping center Derrick Brassard off to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
•It took 20 seconds longer than Tim Kerr, but Ivan Provorov’s goal 28 ticks into Saturday’s game was a good start for the Flyers. Kerr scored eight seconds into a game against the Edmonton Oilers way back in 1989 to set the standard for the fastest Flyers’ goal to start a game. Provorov scored 20 seconds faster than Giroux did on Nov. 28, 2017, which was the previous quickest 1-0 lead for the Flyers this season.
•Challenge accepted. Flyers coach Dave Hakstol challenged a goal 12 minutes into the second period, claiming the Senators were offside. The coach was bang on, the goal was overturned and the Flyers maintained the 2-1 lead.
•Nolan Patrick had scored in his three previous games and through the first 40 minutes Saturday, the Flyers' rookie was unable to make it a quartet. It wasn’t for lack of trying though, as Patrick had five shots on goal through two periods. The goal finally came for Patrick in the third, however, with a tip in front off a Manning shot. He finished with nine shots.
•Petr Mrazek only needed to make 19 saves Thursday to get a win in his first game with the Flyers. He made 19 through the first 39 minutes Saturday. He also got help from his right post when Dzingel rang one off it midway through the second.
•Despite two early goals on shots he should have stopped, Craig Anderson picked up his game through the final two-plus periods, making some big saves to keep the Senators alive and kicking.
•The Flyers’ third and fifth goals were a perfect example of the Beauty and the Beast. Giroux scored a beauty on a breakaway when he turned his body and went to his backhand before turning the other way to his forehand and placing the puck into an empty net behind an undressed Anderson. Manning scored when his dump-in hit the station in the glass and went in, as Anderson stood behind the net and watched after going to play the dump in.
•The Flyers will be silent on the ice until after the trade deadline as they don’t play until they meet the Canadiens in Montreal Monday night. Off the ice, we’ll see.