ANAHEIM – Nothing really to gloat about after an 0-2-1 road trip while the Flyers have now won just one of seven games since their 10-game winning streak ended.
“The effort and determination was there,” goalie Steve Mason said. “We came back a couple times. But in saying that, we also got to find ways to get back in the winning column. We’re letting these points slip away and we can’t let that continue.”
They have just four points out of a possible 14.
“There’s always things you have to work out,” Wayne Simmonds said. “This wasn’t our best road trip. We played two games in St. Louis and San Jose where we had to compete harder and battle more. Tonight we didn’t get the results.”
This was the one game they deserved to win outright with a season-high 55 shots. They tried to play an east-west game against San Jose, which plays a hard, north-south game and it didn’t work.
In this one, they matched and exceeded the Ducks in north-south and were simply beaten by goalie John Gibson, who had a career-high 52 saves.
“We did pretty well in San Jose, guys worked hard,” Brayden Schenn said. “It was one of those nights where we couldn’t generate a whole lot.
“We switched a few things up and got some chances out of it. If we keep doing the same things, throw some pucks on net, we’re going to score some goals.”
The Flyers have now lost 11 straight games over the past three years coming out of the Christmas break.
“This wasn’t the outcome we wanted and only one point out of six, it’s disappointing,” Sean Couturier said. “I think we can build on this game. Fifty-five shots is a lot of chances. We can build on that.”
The Flyers tied a franchise record for shots in a road game with 55. They did that twice before: March 1, 2007, at BOS (4-3 overtime win) and Feb. 21, 2012, at WPG (5-4 OTW).
This was the most shots they’ve ever had in a road loss.
Their 38 shots through two periods, per the Elias Sports Bureau, tied the 38 they had for two periods on Oct. 13, 2001, at Florida.
The last time the Flyers outshot the opponent by 30 or more shots was Feb. 26, 2015, when they outshot Toronto, 49-17 (plus-32) in a 3-2 loss at Air Canada Centre.
Flyers coach Dave Hakstol opted to play Steve Mason, who had a bruised left forearm from the Sharks' loss, rather than go with rookie Anthony Stolarz, who was completely healthy and deserved the shot after 40 impressive minutes in relief during the 2-0 defeat in San Jose.
It’s almost seemed a panic move to salvage two points from the three-game road trip. This was Mason’s 21st start in 23 games.
“He had a good practice yesterday and was ready to go,” Hakstol said.
Mason came in with a terrible career record against Anaheim – 5-10-2 with a 3.34 goals against average and .889 save percentage.
Told that Mason’s hand looked bad Friday night in San Jose, Hakstol replied, “He’s good to go … He had a good 30-minute skate.”
Mason had a large welt on his left forearm after the game. He faced just 25 shots and would not comment on his injury.
When pressed as to why not allow Stolarz to play, Hakstol said, he “gave it consideration.”
“He played very well coming in the other night,” Hakstol said. “He did an outstanding job. That being said, Mase has been the guy who has done a great job for us. I didn’t give it a whole lot of second thought.”
Hakstol said this wasn’t about rewarding Stolarz for a fine job off the bench in a loss. The coach didn’t exactly give him a ringing endorsement for having trust to get two points from the Ducks.
“Right now, it’s about winning hockey games,” Hakstol said. “The other stuff really doesn’t play into it.”
Surprising words given how Stolarz has looked in games during the four times he appeared for the Flyers – a 1.79 goals against average and .938 save percentage.