Cam Talbot

Stars 6, Flyers 2: Limping to the 2018-19 finish line

Stars 6, Flyers 2: Limping to the 2018-19 finish line


A predictable result unfolded Tuesday night at American Airlines Center.

The Flyers lost, 6-2, to the playoff-hungry Stars, who needed just one point to clinch a postseason berth.

The Stars (42-31-7) emphatically got two points, while the Flyers (37-35-8) continued to look like a team struggling to find motivation as it plays out the string.

After going 18-4-2 in their previous 24 games, the Flyers are 3-8-0 in the last 11 and have been outscored 42-25.

• The NBC Sports Philadelphia broadcast showed Nolan Patrick looking rather animated on the bench as he talked to interim head coach Scott Gordon following the Stars' fourth goal.

The discussion didn't escalate by any means. It appeared Patrick and Gordon were trying to understand each other's points on the play. Tyler Pitlick swooped right into the slot to bury a pass as Patrick and Ivan Provorov were late in coverage.

Gordon has been great with the Flyers' younger players. At this point, there was clearly frustration from both sides as the Flyers went from digging out of a two-goal hole during the middle stanza to putting themselves right back in one by period's end.

• Patrick provided one of the lone positives for the Flyers. After going scoreless in his previous eight games, the 20-year-old center made an aggressive play to the net, which resulted in Oskar Lindblom putting home a rebound for the Flyers' first goal.

Next season will be about consistency for Patrick, Lindblom and Travis Konecny. Hopefully we can see more of that line over the final two games.

• Well, it was nice to see somewhat of a response from the Flyers in the second period. They showed the pride many wanted to see Sunday when the Flyers lost, 3-0, to the rebuilding Rangers in their first game since being eliminated from playoff contention.

The mini surge didn't last long, though. After the Flyers tied the game at 2-2, the Stars answered with two more goals before blowing things open in the third. Dallas looked like a team eager to clinch.

• Who knows what the Flyers will do with pending unrestricted free agent Cam Talbot in the offseason. They haven't given him many auditions. Making just his third start since being acquired in mid-February, Talbot was ambushed by the Stars and finished with 24 saves on 30 shots.

• Unsurprisingly, Dallas was ready out of the chute.

The Stars dissected the Flyers early by showing their skill on a pair of first-period goals.

Jason Dickinson and Tyler Seguin teamed up for a pretty goal just 1:34 into the action. Dallas jumped on a turnover as Dickinson dropped off a pass to Seguin, who patiently fed the puck back to Dickinson for the 1-0 lead.

Less than three minutes later, Esa Lindell beautifully redirected a pass through his legs and past Talbot top shelf for a power-play marker. The Stars went on six power plays and scored twice.

A Samuel Morin tripping penalty put Dallas on the man advantage for the Lindell goal, but those are high-end plays from the Stars that gave them a 2-0 lead at first intermission. It's OK to give credit to the opposition sometimes.

On the season, the Flyers have been outscored 86-59 in the first period. In their defense, though, they didn't play terribly in the opening stanza Tuesday and could have gotten a call or two (or more throughout the game).

• Speaking of Morin, he did a nice job to break up a potential odd-man rush for the Stars. The tripping penalty happens. Morin still looks a bit tentative at times, which is understandable with the 6-foot-7 defenseman just three games in after recovering from a torn ACL.

• Claude Giroux (assist), Sean Couturier (scoreless), Jakub Voracek (assist) and James van Riemsdyk (scoreless) were held to two points.

Alexander Radulov, the Stars' second-leading scorer, put up four points on two goals and two assists.

• The Flyers play their final road game of 2018-19 Thursday when they visit Brayden Schenn and the playoff-bound Blues (8 p.m./NBCSP+).

They come home Saturday for the regular-season finale against the Hurricanes (7 p.m./NBCSP).

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Hurricanes call off celebrations just as Flyers turn to Cam Talbot

Hurricanes call off celebrations just as Flyers turn to Cam Talbot

VOORHEES, N.J. — There will be no celebration for the Carolina Hurricanes in the event of a victory over the Flyers on Saturday.

According to team captain Justin Williams, who sent out a tweet Thursday afternoon, the Hurricanes are shutting down their celebratory “Storm Surge” — a cub scout-like on-ice skit that has brought an energy and excitement level to PNC Arena following the team’s victories this season.

The creativity and enthusiasm of the "Surge" took off after Hockey Night in Canada’s Don Cherry labeled the Hurricanes players as “a bunch of jerks” for their antics. The team immediately responded by mocking Cherry and selling T-shirts that read “Bunch of Jerks” across the front.

James van Riemsdyk, whose brother Trevor is a defenseman with Carolina, has found a certain amusement with the celebration that even included Trevor showcasing his basketball skills. 

“It definitely seemed a little wacky at first, but as athetes, we’re here to be entertainers as well, so if that’s part of it, then that’s part of it," van Riemsdyk said. "Some of them have been pretty clever. I don’t really have a problem with it. My parents have gone down to a bunch of the games, and they’ve even noticed a difference from last year to this year. The fan experience and the engagement of the fans has been night-and-day different.”

Regardless of whether the Hurricanes shut down their postgame antics or not, Cam Talbot wants to ensure the 'Canes have no reason to celebrate on Saturday. Talbot will start the game in Carolina, another sign the Flyers' organization is turning its focus toward next season.

“I think that’s pretty much why they brought me in is more or less an audition,” Talbot said. “It’s taken me a little bit longer to get this opportunity. Have to do my best with it even though it has been a long layoff and get back into it as quick as possible.”

Talbot has played just two games with the Flyers since the team acquired him from Edmonton on Feb. 16, and he’s made only one start — a 6-3 win over the Devils on March 1.

Interim head coach Scott Gordon said earlier this week he’d like to get Talbot “two or three” starts over their final five regular-season games. 

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Despite a lack of playing time, Cam Talbot still sees a future in Philly

Despite a lack of playing time, Cam Talbot still sees a future in Philly

VOORHEES, N.J. — The timing couldn’t have been better for Cam Talbot to come to Philadelphia.

Then again, it also couldn’t have been worse.

The 31-year-old workhorse was no longer the lead pony in Edmonton and was bracing for a change of scenery. It came sooner than expected when the Flyers were willing to swap out Anthony Stolarz for Talbot. He even waived his no-trade clause to make the deal happen.

What hasn’t happened has been a sufficient amount of playing time. Talbot has seen action in just two games since the trade on Feb. 16. If it wasn’t for an injury to Carter Hart, who knows if Talbot would have seen any playing time at all. 

“It’s not exactly what I had envisioned when I got here, but when the other two guys are playing as well as they have been, you have to just sit back and wait for your chance,” Talbot said. “I’m just coming to the rink every day, working hard and waiting for my opportunity.”

Now that we’re entering the final week of the regular season, the Flyers could see a heavy dose of Talbot once the Flyers are officially eliminated from playoff contention — which could come as early as Wednesday with a regulation loss to the Maple Leafs coupled with a Canadiens regulation win on Tuesday. 

Scott Gordon says Carter Hart will get the nod for Wednesday’s game against the Maple Leafs, but Talbot could earn “at least two, maybe three” starts beginning with this weekend’s back-to-back against the Hurricanes and the Rangers.

The Flyers interim head coach even felt the need to meet with Talbot recently regarding the unique state of affairs that have led to his current situation, where Talbot has seen just 93 minutes of action in two games with his new team.

“I talked to him about the circumstances of coming here, the delay of getting here with the visa issues didn’t allow him to practice for a week,” Gordon said. “Didn’t expect that Brian would come back and play. Those could have been situations had he been here he may have jumped in there and played those two games that Carter came out of, and then maybe he’s playing that next start in the outdoor game.” 

But it hasn’t worked out that way at all, and Talbot can only ask repeatedly the “What’s next?” question.  

So far, there has been no movement towards a new contract for the free-agent-to-be goaltender, but between extended practices, Talbot has had a chance to get acclimated even more with the city, the organization and his teammates.

“It makes you want to come back a little bit more,” Talbot said. “Obviously, I would have loved to play some games here down the stretch, but the organization has been first class. The guys in the room have been great with me and they seem like a great group of guys. It seems like a great group moving forward and I’d still like that opportunity if they’re looking for that.”

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