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Flyers beat Penguins to start season: Four for Farabee and other takeaways

Joel Farabee leads the charge with a goal and three assists, while Kevin Hayes and Erik Gustafsson also put up multi-point games as Philly opens the 2020-21 NHL campaign with a dominant 6-3 win over Pittsburgh.

Joel Farabee and the Philadelphia Flyers took over what began as a back-and-forth game to kick off the 2020-21 NHL season with a 6-3 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Farabee starts Flyers season with big night vs. Penguins

At 20, and only in his second season, we’ve only gotten a few tastes of what Joel Farabee can mean to the Flyers. He’s even new to his number, changing from 49 to 86.

(Pretty sure it does not echo Sidney Crosby and his fixation on the numbers 8 and 7.)

Farabee tied the Flyers franchise record for a season-opener by scoring four points (one goal, three assists). His tally was quite the sneaky bit of timely work:

That goal put the Flyers up 3-2, but an early Brandon Tanev tally tied things up 3-3 early in the third period. That would be the last particularly good thing that happened for the Penguins against the Flyers on Wednesday.

The Flyers collected three unanswered goals to run away with this one. Things really got away from the Penguins on the last two tallies, as Travis Konecny and Kevin Hayes scored just two seconds apart.

Tough opener for Hart and Jarry

During a normal season, you’ll see more defensive lapses. Part of that boils down to rust. Sometimes it’s also about young players getting looks, and possibly exposed as not ready for primetime.

Either way, Farabee and the Flyers made it an adventurous outing for Tristan Jarry, while Carter Hart had to stay on his toes. Sidney Crosby created the biggest brain-fart moment, though, when he exploited a Hart mistake and showed off hand-eye coordination to score this goal:

Penguins, Flyers both face COVID-related absences

Kasperi Kapanen and Shayne Gostisbehere missed Wednesday’s game due to COVID-19 precautions.

The Penguins and Flyers turn around for another game on Friday. For the full NHL on NBC schedule, click here.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.