New faces on display, Hart shows well as Flyers lose preseason opener


With a listed attendance of 12,600 fans back at the Wells Fargo Center on Tuesday night, the Flyers lost their preseason opener to the Islanders in overtime, 3-2.

Egor Zamula and Maksim Sushko provided the goals for the Flyers.

Twenty-two seconds into the bonus session, Anthony Beauvillier won it for New York.

• All in all, a solid start to Carter Hart's preseason. The 23-year-old goalie played the first two periods and converted 17 saves on 18 shots faced.

"He looked confident, he looked big, he looked in control," Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault said. "That was great to see from his part. I'm sure that he's feeling good about this first start and he's looking forward to his next."

Hart allowed a game-tying second-period goalie to Adam Pelech. The Islanders' defenseman beat him from deep as it appeared Hart had trouble tracking the shot through traffic.

Hart is coming off his first taste of adversity at the NHL level. He was not himself last season as the Flyers struggled collectively to the tune of 3.52 goals allowed per game, worst in the NHL.

Vigneault said he has noticed a stronger and rejuvenated Hart in camp. The young goalie quickly turned the page this summer.

"Last year's in the past, so it has no effect on this upcoming season," Hart said last Thursday. "I think this summer we made a lot of good moves. Lost some great players but I think some of the guys coming in will fill some big roles and step up. I’m looking forward to the start of the season."


Prospect Samuel Ersson made nine stops. He yielded a power play goal to Noah Dobson in the final stanza and the OT winner to Beauvillier, who scored on a nasty shot.

• General manager Chuck Fletcher added seven pieces to the big club roster this summer. Four of them took the ice Tuesday night as Ryan Ellis, Cam Atkinson, Derick Brassard and Keith Yandle saw their first game action with the Flyers.

Ellis, the headliner of Fletcher's offseason, reads the game at a high level. Watch his shifts closely and you'll notice how he is consistently in the right spot.

When the 30-year-old defenseman was acquired in a July trade, he mentioned taking pride in winning plays. He blocked a pair of shots in the first period and finished with four over 23:43 minutes of ice time. He also had an assist and a team-high six shots.

"He moves the puck really well and seems to always find that lane to the net," Sean Couturier said. "He's fun to play with; those shots get through, there's always rebounds or someone going for a second chance. It's nice to see and hopefully we can build some good chemistry."

Overall, Ellis and Ivan Provorov (one assist, five blocked shots) looked pretty comfortable together for it being their first game together.

Brassard has a ton of experience and it showed. He was solid in the faceoff circle (13 for 19) and had an assist on Zamula's goal.

Yandle quarterbacked the power play and Atkinson was active. Both showed flashes of their games.

• Tyson Foerster, the club's 2020 first-round pick who has turned heads, went scoreless in 15:50 minutes. He saw action on the power play. Expectedly, there were likely some nerves for the 19-year-old winger.

• Some notes on prospects vying to climb the organizational depth chart:

Zamula's goal broke the ice in the second period. Oskar Lindblom had a good screen in front as Zamula gathered a loose puck, maneuvered near the blue line and fired away.

The 21-year-old defenseman is a fluid skater and has the ability to creatively work around defenders when he has the puck on his stick. He'll be one of the Phantoms' top defensemen this season and pushing for a call-up to the Flyers when they need help.

"Egor's a great talent, he's a great kid, we love him in the locker room," Hart said. "Really skilled, he's smart with the puck and he's looking great."

Sushko's goal was on a nice wraparound with under six minutes left in regulation. He made his NHL debut last season.

Isaac Ratcliffe had a scoring chance in the second period. Connor Bunnaman and German Rubtsov saw big minutes on the penalty kill.

• The Flyers' power play went 0 for 3. The penalty kill went 2 for 3.


• The Flyers are back on the ice Wednesday in Voorhees, New Jersey. The club's second preseason game comes Thursday against the Bruins at TD Garden (7:30 p.m. ET/TNT).

Offseason acquisition Rasmus Ristolainen is expected to see his first game action with the Flyers, while prospects Morgan Frost and Cam York are also likely to make their preseason debuts.

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