Dallas Stars

Flyers left wondering what if with puzzling loss to Stars

Flyers left wondering what if with puzzling loss to Stars

BOX SCORE

DALLAS — It was a weird way to earn a power play. Just 5:31 into Tuesday’s game against the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Center, Flyers captain Claude Giroux was tripped by goaltender Kari Lehtonen behind the net.

However, that was one of the few mistakes Lehtonen would make the entire evening, one in which he finished with 31 saves.

The Flyers managed a shot on that power play, but not converting that early opportunity set an ominous tone for the rest of the night.

Sure, the Flyers did get a goal from Travis Konecny late in the first and from Ivan Provorov early in the second period, but the story of this game for the visitors was the multitude of missed high-quality scoring chances, opportunities for the Flyers to leave Texas with a full two points instead of the one they earned in a 3-2 overtime loss (see observations). Now, the Flyers have lost three of their last four games, with all three defeats coming after regulation.

Prior to scoring his 23rd goal of the season, Konecny had been turned away by Lehtonen with seven minutes remaining in the first with a pad save following a Stars' turnover. Konecny then fired the ensuing rebound wide of the net.

“He made some unbelievable saves to keep them in it and I think that gave them just that little bit of momentum and kept them in the game,” Konecny said.

But it wasn’t just Konecny who failed to capitalize. Wayne Simmonds also had two prime scoring chances slip through his fingers. Late in the first period, Simmonds pounced on another Stars' turnover, but was denied by Lehtonen and the game remained 1-1.

And about five minutes after Provorov gave what proved to be the Flyers’ only lead of the game at 2-1 early in the middle frame, Simmonds had another prime chance, but again Lehtonen turned him away, this time doing so at close range.

“Yeah, got to put one in the net," Simmonds said. "Guess he made some good saves though."

Both Stars' goals in regulation came under somewhat fortuitous circumstances. Radek Faksa’s goal with 9:10 remaining in the first period came when he scored off a carom after a slap shot by John Klingberg deflected off the end boards and fell to him at the far post.

And the Stars’ game-tying power-play goal in the second came when Brett Ritchie gained a little space on Radko Gudas at the far post, enough space to redirect Alexander Radulov’s shot into the net to make it 2-2. Radulov then went on to net the game-winner 40 seconds into overtime.

Flyers goaltender Petr Mrazek made 20 saves in a losing effort and feels luck was simply not on the Flyers’ side in this overtime defeat.

“We had lots of chances, lots of opportunities,” Mrazek said. “I think this time of the year, we have to get those bounces on our side. I feel today the first and the second goal, those were the bounces on their end.”

The Flyers, who remain in the first wild-card playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 90 points, return to action Wednesday at Colorado (10 p.m./NBCSP+).

Flyers allow goal just 40 seconds into OT of loss to Stars

Flyers allow goal just 40 seconds into OT of loss to Stars

BOX SCORE

DALLAS — Alexander Radulov scored 40 seconds into overtime for the Dallas Stars, who edged the Flyers, 3-2, at American Airlines Center on Tuesday. 

Radulov scored his 27th goal of the season off the rush, tapping in a pass from Tyler Seguin to give the Stars their first win since March 9 against Anaheim. 

Travis Konecny and Ivan Provorov scored for the Flyers (38-25-14, 90 points) (see standings).

Radek Faksa and Brett Richie also scored for the Stars. 

The Stars took an early lead when Faksa scored his 23rd goal of the season with 9:10 remaining in the first period. After John Klingberg’s slap shot deflected off the end boards and landed at Faksa’s skates at the far post, he tapped the puck in to make it 1-0.

Konecny tied it for the Flyers with his 23rd goal of the season with 3:09 remaining in the first period. Konecny sent a wrist shot over the left shoulder of Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen from the right circle for the equalizer.

Provorov gave the Flyers their first lead with his 14th goal of the season 2:03 into the second period when he beat Lehtonen far post on a wrist shot from the slot.

But the Stars pulled level at two apiece when Ritchie scored his seventh of the season at 10:11 of the second on the power play. Ritchie got inside Flyers defenseman Radko Gudas at the far post, enough to redirect Radulov’s shot from the right point. 

• The Stars outshot the Flyers, 6-1, to start the game and led, 1-0, with 9:10 remaining in the opening frame. However, the Flyers responded, outshooting Dallas, 11-4, the rest of the period and tying the game on Konecny’s 23rd goal with 3:09 remaining. The Flyers also outshot the Stars, 14-6, in the third. 

• Shayne Gostisbehere clearly won the battle with the Stars’ Klingberg, two of the NHL’s top scoring defensemen. Gostisbehere’s two assists gave him 59 points, fourth among defensemen and just two points behind Klingberg, who had no points Tuesday and is third among NHL D-men with 61 points. 

• The Flyers had plenty of close calls in this one. In the first period off a Stars turnover, Konency fired a wrist shot right at Lehtonen on a breakaway and then sent the rebound wide of the net. Wayne Simmonds had a similar chance late in the opening frame, but Lehtonen denied Simmonds on a breakaway. Lehtonen also denied Simmonds up close in the second and Nolan Patrick on a breakaway early in the third. 

• For the second time in a week, the Flyers saw a foe’s long losing streak end against them. On March 20, the Flyers lost, 5-4, in a shootout to the Red Wings, ending their 10-game losing streak. The Stars had lost eight straight prior to Tuesday’s 3-2 overtime victory over the Flyers. 

The see-saw Metro tilts to Penguins with Capitals idle

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USA Today Images

The see-saw Metro tilts to Penguins with Capitals idle

PITTSBURGH -- Jamie Oleksiak scored a goal against his former team to help the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Dallas Stars 3-1 on Sunday night.

Oleksiak scored his fifth of the season, while Evgeni Malkin got his 39th and added an assist. Patric Hornqvist scored a power-play goal, his 20th, to help the Penguins win for the fourth in five games.

Malkin, now with 919 points, moved past Pavel Datsyuk for fifth on the NHL's all-time points list among Russian-born players. He also equaled a season-high six-game points streak.

Pittsburgh, which rebounded from a 5-2 loss at Toronto one night earlier, jumped past Washington for first place in a tight Metropolitan Division. The Penguins, who lost six of their previous seven against Dallas, have won 14 of their last 15 overall at home (see full recap).

Gibson makes 50 saves, Islanders beat Flames to end skid
CALGARY, Alberta -- Rookie goalie Christopher Gibson made 50 saves as the New York Islanders beat the Calgary Flames 5-2 on Sunday to snap an eight-game losing streak.

Anders Lee scored twice, while Johnny Boychuk had a goal and two assists for New York, which was 0-4-4 since winning at Carolina on Feb. 16. Nick Leddy and Jordan Eberle also scored for the Islanders, and Casey Cizikas and John Tavares had two assists each.

Gibson improved his record this season to 1-0-2 and got his second NHL win. He was 1-1-1 for the Islanders in the 2015-16 season.

Johnny Gaudreau had a goal and an assist for the Flames, who kicked off a three-game homestand after going 2-0-1 on the road last week. Mark Giordano also scored, while goalie Mike Smith made 22 saves in his return after missing 13 games with a lower-body injury (see full recap).

Kane's late PP goal lifts Blackhawks past Bruins
CHICAGO -- Patrick Kane scored a tie-breaking power-play goal with 3:16 left in the third period and had an assist, and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Boston Bruins 3-1 on Sunday afternoon.

Kane scored on a screened shot from just inside the left point to put Chicago ahead 2-1 with Boston's Zdeno Chara off for high-sticking Brandon Saad, getting a double-minor for drawing blood. Brent Seabrook added a goal from the right circle on a screened shot with 1:05 remaining as the Blackhawks ended Boston's six-game winning streak and their own two-game slide.

Chicago's Artem Anisimov scored his 20th goal, reaching that mark for the third straight season since the Blackhawks acquired him from Columbus. Anton Forsberg made 31 saves, and Jonathan Toews had three assists.

Chara scored his seventh goal, tying the game 1-1 midway through the third period. Boston back-up Anton Khudobin stopped 36 shots (see full recap).