Frustrations aplenty as Flyers are bombarded in Beantown


In the times of the coronavirus pandemic, the Flyers couldn't do anything in Boston outside of hockey.

And given the results on the ice, they surely won't miss Beantown.

Alain Vigneault's club was thumped by the Bruins, 6-1, on Saturday night at TD Garden as Boston swept the two-game set with the Flyers.

The Flyers scored five goals over the two games. The Bruins scored a combined seven in the third periods alone.

Prior to this winless trip, the Flyers (3-2-1) had gone 30 regular-season games without consecutive losses. The last time they had lost two regular-season games in succession was Dec. 31-Jan. 7 of last year, when they dropped four straight.

The Flyers are banged up and don't have 2019-20 Selke Trophy winner Sean Couturier, but the Bruins (3-1-1) were missing a star for both games, as well, and still took it to the orange and black.

Carter Hart, who seldom shows his frustration, was shown on the NBC Sports Philadelphia broadcast taking multiple whacks and breaking his stick over the net following Saturday night's final horn.

More: Hart's whacks of frustration symbolic of Flyers' start to 2020-21 season

• The Flyers resemble a totally different team that surged down the 2019-20 regular-season stretch.

Should that be worrisome? Yes. Are they allowing a scary number of shots? Yes.

But the sky isn't falling. They are 3-2-1 and some of Vigneault's best teams didn't figure things out right away, last season included. A reminder: the Flyers started 2-3-1 last season and were average at best in the opening month. The Flyers truly didn't click until January.


This season started later and is a shortened, 56-game campaign, but the Delaware Valley should not be pressing the panic button yet.

• Outshooting the opposition doesn't mean everything, but it's not good when you're outshot every game through the first six of the season.

That's what has happened for the Flyers, with four of those shot differentials coming by double-digit margins.

They entered Saturday night allowing the NHL's second-most shots per game (37.4) and have been outshot 213-142 through six games.

• The true backbreaking goal for the Flyers came 4:13 into the third period when Erik Gustafsson was completely exposed in the defensive zone.

The offseason acquisition was sloppy and outworked on a loose puck. Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand made him pay, extending Boston's lead to 4-1 and that was pretty much the game.

After a good showing in the opener, the offensive-minded Gustaffson has just one assist, five shots and has struggled defensively. If he's not producing a ton offensively, he has to be better defensively.

• This is the first time in his career that Hart has allowed four or more goals in three consecutive starts. The 22-year-old has permitted 14 in his current three-game stretch of starts.

The Flyers have played extremely poorly in front of him. He can be significantly better, too, but the Flyers have been a mess systematically.

Hart is probably the least of the Flyers' concerns.

Jaroslav Halak had to make only 16 saves for the win.

• The Flyers suffered their first regulation loss in Kevin Hayes' tenure when the 28-year-old center scores a goal. 

They are now 24-1-1 in games that Hayes lights the lamp, including both the regular season and playoffs.

• The Bruins were without David Pastrnak (hip) in this two-game set and it didn't matter much.

Boston's two other stars, Bergeron and Marchand, picked apart the Flyers on Saturday night. They had two goals and three points apiece.

• Oskar Lindblom asked the NHL if he could wear a cancer ribbon sticker on his helmet for the remainder of the season and the league approved his request.

The 24-year-old winger was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma in December 2019 and completed his radiation treatments in July 2020.

Zack Hill/Philadelphia Flyers

• The Flyers are off Sunday and practice Monday in Voorhees, New Jersey, before traveling to Newark, New Jersey, for games against the Devils on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET/NBCSP) and Thursday (7 p.m. ET/NBCSP).

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