Flyers

Islanders 6, Flyers 1: Dave Hakstol's challenge goes unanswered in loss

Islanders 6, Flyers 1: Dave Hakstol's challenge goes unanswered in loss

BOX SCORE

The Flyers were in the Halloween spirit Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center. 

Themed music played over the speakers, costume contests broke out in the concourse and spooky graphics flashed on the Jumbotron.

If fans left scared, it wasn't from the festivities. It was from their hockey team putting up a frighteningly loud dud in a 6-1 loss to the Islanders.

A day after head coach Dave Hakstol challenged his team (see story), the Flyers (4-7-0) did zilch to answer him against an Islanders (4-4-1) team that had lost four of its last five. 

The Flyers, who have allowed an NHL-worst 46 goals this season, have lost three straight and now kick off a four-game road trip.

• The Flyers had breakdowns, showed little life, found no rhythm, were mostly perimeter-oriented on offense and failed to score on the power play (1 for its last 20).

Nothing was good.

Things got ugly in the third period when the Islanders piled on three straight goals with the Flyers showing no resistance. After New York's sixth tally, fans gave up booing and simply filed for the exits (see story).

• Michal Neuvirth couldn't play hero in his season debut. He wasn't close to good enough to prevent the Flyers from stumbling again. He permitted some soft goals and was yanked after the sixth. This team isn't scoring and is a mess in front of its goalie.

• Once again, the Flyers allowed the opponent to score first, making it the 10th time in 11 games.

They trailed, 2-0, at first intermission. The second goal was not good. It came off a failed clear and multiple Flyers (Jakub Voracek, Nolan Patrick, Oskar Lindblom) were too slow in retreat as Anthony Beauvillier finished off a nice setup with 6:40 left in the opening stanza.

Following this point, the Flyers never felt in the game. A 2-0 deficit feels like 6-0 right now.

• After practice Friday, Hakstol pleaded for a spark. Ivan Provorov tried being the guy when he leveled the Islanders' best player Mathew Barzal late in the first period. The hit elicited a standing ovation from fans and a penalty on the Islanders.

However, the Flyers' power play whiffed on the opportunity and boos ensued.

• It's not good when Jori Lehtera is awakening your team from an offensive slumber. He put the Flyers on the board with a quick turnaround shot in the second period. Before that goal, the Flyers had been outscored 10-1 this week. They finished the week being outscored 13-2 in three defeats.

• Fourth-liner Corban Knight left the game in the first period with an upper-body injury and did not return.

• Think some fans are getting a little restless?

• The Flyers are off Sunday and then practice Monday in Los Angeles before playing the Ducks Tuesday at 10 p.m. on NBCSP. Anaheim, which has lost four straight, hosts the Sharks Sunday before welcoming the Flyers.

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Flyers' Radko Gudas receives 2-game suspension, opening door for Philippe Myers

Flyers' Radko Gudas receives 2-game suspension, opening door for Philippe Myers

Radko Gudas was burned by his reputation Wednesday and it will cost him from playing in two of the Flyers' biggest games this season.

The NHL's Department of Player Safety handed down a two-game suspension for Gudas' high-sticking infraction to the head of Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov during the third period of the Flyers' 5-2 loss Tuesday at the Wells Fargo Center.

Gudas is classified as a repeat offender under the terms of the CBA and his history of such penalties bit him in this circumstance, as he'll miss Thursday's road game against the Canadiens and Saturday's Stadium Series game against the Penguins at Lincoln Financial Field. 

On top of the suspension, the Flyers' defenseman will also forfeit $81,707.32.

Here was the review and reasoning behind the decision from the NHL's Department of Player Safety:

While we agree with Gudas' assertion that this slash is not excessively forceful or violent, this is an intentional play by Gudas. A player who intentionally brings his stick down onto the head of an opponent with a two-handed slashing motion can expect to be penalized by the on-ice officials and, in most cases, be met with some form of supplemental discipline be it a warning, a fine or a suspension.

What causes this play to rise to the level of a suspension is Gudas' disciplinary history, specifically his history of similar behavior.

Prior to this incident, Gudas had been hit with suspensions of 10 games (2017-18), six games (2016-17) and three games (2015-16).

The 28-year-old has cleaned up his play significantly this season, becoming one of the Flyers' most reliable defensemen. Gudas owns a team-best plus-12 rating and his penalties have been down compared to years past. He also plays the Flyers' second-most penalty-kill minutes (159:16), while leading the team in hits (197) and blocking the third-most shots (101).

His absence opens the door for 22-year-old prospect Philippe Myers, who has played just one NHL game — his debut last weekend. It marks a huge opportunity for Myers to prove himself to the coaching staff and general manager Chuck Fletcher.

"Phil Myers can help this team win right now, too," Fletcher said Feb. 9.

"He's still a young man and really, his key time will be next year at training camp and earning a full-time spot for a full season. But right now, if we can get him some experience, practice seems great, being around the team is great, if he can get some games, that'll only help him as he prepares for next year."

The Flyers entered Wednesday six points out of the Eastern Conference's second wild-card spot with 22 games remaining. Two teams they're chasing in the playoff hunt are the Canadiens and Penguins, both of whom have 71 points compared to the Flyers' 63.

Meanwhile, Gudas wasn't the Flyers' only defenseman in trouble Wednesday. Robert Hagg was fined $3,091.40 for interference on Cedric Paquette during Tuesday's game.

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Scott Hartnell, other fan favorites highlight Flyers alumni game for 2019 Stadium Series weekend

Scott Hartnell, other fan favorites highlight Flyers alumni game for 2019 Stadium Series weekend

What makes the Stadium Series that much more fun is how it brings the families and alumni together for the weekend.

The Flyers' alumni showdown for this year's event should be plenty of fun.

On Wednesday, the roster was announced for the game, which will be held Friday at 7 p.m. on Penn's campus at the Class of '23 Arena. 

Many fan favorites will suit up, including Scott Hartnell, who has been a busy man since retiring in October. Hartnell was honored by the Flyers in December and was officially named an on-air analyst Wednesday for the NHL Network.

Here are the former Flyers that will play Friday against alumni from the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation.

Forwards

• Riley Cote, Brian Propp, Danny Briere, Todd Fedoruk, Scott Hartnell, Mitch Lamoureux, Dave Brown

Defensemen

• Brad Marsh, Joe Watson, Terry Carkner, Doug Crossman, Kjell Samuelsson, Jim Watson, Nick Schultz, Kimmo Timonen

Goaltender

• Brian Boucher

Paul Holmgren, Bob Kelly and Bill Barber are set to coach the team, while Bernie Parent, Dave Schultz, Bill Clement and Reggie Leach will be in attendance.

For fans interested in attending the game, tickets can be purchased right here.

Meanwhile, the current Flyers will also hit the ice Friday for a 6 p.m. practice at Lincoln Financial Field in preparation for Saturday's 8 p.m. game against the Penguins.

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