Flyers

NHL Playoffs: Justin Williams' OT goal gives Capitals Game 5 win over Maple Leafs

NHL Playoffs: Justin Williams' OT goal gives Capitals Game 5 win over Maple Leafs

WASHINGTON -- Justin Williams scored the overtime winner as the Washington Capitals beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 2-1 Friday night in Game 5 to take a 3-2 lead in their first-round series.

The Capitals survived a scare when captain Alex Ovechkin left the game late in the first period with an apparent left leg injury, but he returned in the second. Thanks to Williams' goal 1:04 into overtime, the Presidents' Trophy winners go to Toronto for Game 6 on Sunday with a chance to advance to face the defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round.

Braden Holtby made 24 saves for the Capitals, who got a goal from T.J. Oshie on the power play that came from Nazem Kadri's hit that injured Ovechkin.

Rookie of the year finalist Auston Matthews scored the only goal for the Maple Leafs, and Frederik Andersen made 26 saves before being beaten in overtime.

Williams' goal was his third of the series. It's also the 16th of his career in 43 tries in Games 5-7 as his team improved to 26-18 in those situations.

Four of the first five games of the series have been decided in overtime. What looked lopsided on paper going in has been as tight as anyone could have possibly imagined with the teams separated by one goal in the series (16-15 Capitals) and tied in shots (175 apiece).

As if this tense series didn't provide enough drama, the Ovechkin injury silenced Verizon Center 17:32 in. Ovechkin clutched his left knee, was down on the ice for several minutes and didn't put weight on his left leg as he was helped off (see full recap).

Kuraly's 2nd goal of game lifts Bruins past Senators in 2OT
OTTAWA, Ontario -- Sean Kuraly's second goal of the game at 10:19 of the second overtime gave the Boston Bruins a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators in Game 5 on Friday night, avoiding elimination in the first-round series.

David Pastrnak also scored and Tuukka Rask finished with 41 saves to help the Bruins rally from two goals down early in the second period and cut the Senators' lead to 3-2 in the best-of-seven series.

Game 6 is Sunday in Boston.

Mark Stone and Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored for the Senators, and Craig Anderson stopped 36 shots.

The Bruins had the best chances to end the game in the first overtime.

Boston failed to capitalize on a power play when Clarke MacArthur was called for high sticking and then had Noel Acciari's apparent goal waved off at 14:25 due to goalie interference. The Bruins challenged the call to no avail (see full recap).

Flyers re-sign restricted free agent Anthony Stolarz

Flyers re-sign restricted free agent Anthony Stolarz

General manager Ron Hextall is nearly finished wrapping up contracts for his restricted free agents.

And his goalie picture is now clear for 2018-19.

The Flyers on Wednesday re-signed netminder Anthony Stolarz to a one-year, two-way contract. The deal is worth $761,250, according to a report by hockey writer John Hoven.

With Stolarz back, defenseman Robert Hagg remains the Flyers' lone restricted free agent.

Stolarz, a 2012 second-round pick, underwent a nightmarish 2017-18 season just a year after he made his NHL debut and performed well in seven games with the Flyers. The 24-year-old tore the meniscus in his left knee during early September, the same injury he suffered at the end of 2016-17 with AHL affiliate Lehigh Valley.

He played in just one AHL game and three ECHL contests as a result. In 2016-17, he made his way to the big club and put up a 2.07 goals-against average and .928 save percentage in a small sample. Then the injury occurred with the Phantoms and it's been an uphill battle ever since for the 6-foot-6, 210-pounder.

Stolarz will have his work cut out for him — if he hasn't already — as playing time will be earned at Lehigh Valley with Alex Lyon back in the fold and Carter Hart joining them.

"It's just competition. No one is going to go in there and hand you a job, so you have to earn it,” Stolarz said in June after an on-ice workout at Flyers Skate Zone. "I think the thing for me is to prove I'm healthy. I don't think I've skated since the end of January. I had the one flare up before one of my games and it had nothing to do with my knee injury. It was a separate injury. I think the biggest thing is proving I'm healthy and going out there and working to prove I'm still a high-caliber goalie."

The Flyers' goaltending tandem is set with Brian Elliott and Michal Neuvirth, both of whom are in the final year of their contracts. Things obviously can change this offseason, as Neuvirth and Stolarz seemed like realistic trade candidates.

But as of now, it's Elliott and Neuvirth with the younger trio pushing and competing.

"I'd rather have too many goalies than too few," Hextall said earlier this month. "If something makes sense and we can make something happen, we'd at least look at it. We saw it last year. All of a sudden, a couple goalies go down and you're scrambling for goalies. If we start with five, we start with five. Not a perfect situation, but again, I'd rather start with five than with three."

More on the Flyers' goalies

• Following 'gloomy' time, what's next for Elliott?

• Why Neuvirth's NHL career hinges on this offseason

• Hart says so long to Twitter, hello to pro life

• No arbitration needed for Flyers and Lyon

• Sandstrom hungry to prove he's not the 'other' goalie

Former Flyers goalie Ray Emery dies at 35

Former Flyers goalie Ray Emery dies at 35

Former Flyers goaltender Ray Emery died Sunday morning. First responders pulled his body out of Hamilton Harbour, where he had been swimming with friends. An investigation into the cause of death is still ongoing. 

Emery was 35.

According to local authorities, Emery was checking out a friend’s boat docked at Royal Hamilton Yacht Club when the group he was with decided to jump in the water around 6:30 a.m. Emery’s body never surfaced and was eventually recovered around 2:50 p.m. Sunday afternoon. Hamilton police say Emery’s body was recovered in close proximity to where he was last seen.

Emery was last seen publicly with a handful of his former teammates Saturday night as the goaltender participated in Zac Rinaldo’s charity hockey game in Hamilton. Emery can be seen standing during the playing of “O Canada.”

"The Philadelphia Flyers are stunned and extremely saddened to hear of the tragic passing of former Flyers goaltender Ray Emery," president Paul Holmgren said in a statement from the team. "Ray was an outstanding teammate and an extremely gifted goaltender. He had exceptional athleticism, was a fierce competitor and battled in every game he played with the Flyers.

"His performances through the 2009-10 season were a very big part of the team's success in making the playoffs and reaching the Stanley Cup Final. Ray's talent, work ethic and determination helped him enjoy a successful 11-year NHL career. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends during this difficult time."

Several of Emery’s former teammates over the years offered their condolences via Twitter after learning of the tragedy.

Former Flyer Daniel Carcillo shared the he was crushed by the news (NSFW).

Jakub Voracek also shared his condolences (NSFW).

Emery joined the Flyers in June 2009 on a one-year contract, shutting out the Carolina Hurricanes 2-0 in his Flyers debut. The goaltender’s first stint in Philadelphia was cut short when he suffered a muscle tear in his abdomen in December missing the remainder of the season. Emery was later diagnosed with avascular necrosis — a degenerative condition to the bone tissue in his hip.

After undergoing successful surgery, Emery eventually joined the Ducks before winning a Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2013. Impressively, Emery finished the regular season with a 17-1-0 record. He re-signed with the Flyers that summer as a backup to Steve Mason.

Emery’s most infamous moment in Philadelphia came during an ugly 7-0 loss to the Washington Capitals on November 1, 2013, as the Flyers netminder pummeled Caps goalie Braden Holtby during a line brawl in the early stages of the third period.

Emery faced criminal charges over a handful of off-the-ice incidents and altercations. Most recently, he was arrested for assault with a weapon in 2017 against former fiancé Keshia Chanté. 

Emery played a total of 287 NHL games, 88 with the Flyers.