The last time the Flyers took the Wells Fargo Center ice, they were booed off of it during a catastrophic home opener.
They were a much a different team Saturday but the end result was the same. This time, it was a 1-0 defeat to the Golden Knights on Saturday afternoon.
Cody Eakin scored with 1:25 left in regulation as Vegas handed the Flyers (2-3-0) their first shutout of the season.
In four lifetime matchups between the Flyers and Golden Knights, the road team has won all four.
Vegas (2-4-0) came in with the worst goal differential in the NHL at minus-9 but got some revenge from its 5-2 home-opening loss to the Flyers.
• This was the Flyers’ best defensive game of the season. There were very little breakdowns, a stark contrast from the home opener in which the Flyers lost, 8-2, and had Brian Elliott holding on for dear life.
The Flyers couldn’t clear a loose puck late in the third and the Golden Knights turned it into the winner on a pretty cross-ice pass to Eakin.
The Flyers entered Saturday having allowed a league-most six power-play goals. Vegas went on the man advantage just three times and didn’t score on any of them.
• Head coach Dave Hakstol called a timeout after the Golden Knights’ goal. The Flyers then pulled Elliott but couldn’t net the equalizer. They didn’t generate as much in the third with only six shots, while Vegas capitalized on one play.
• The second period picked up significantly for the Flyers, who couldn’t find a way to crack Marc-Andre Fleury. The Golden Knights’ goalie made two highlight-reel stops within a minute-and-a-half span to keep the game scoreless late in the stanza.
The first came on Scott Laughton, who couldn’t deke Fleury on a shorthanded breakaway before crashing into the boards and skating off hunched over.
• The Flyers had their chances in the first, too. The best came around midway through the frame when a rebound trickled to Jordan Weal, but Fleury sprawled backward to deny his shot. Konecny had a chance to flush the rebound but missed top shelf.
• During the second period, Mikhail Vorobyev committed a bad giveaway when he tried to chip the puck with a backhanded pass. It went right to Tomas Nosek, who created a scoring chance but the Golden Knights couldn’t convert.
• Elliott, who was hung out to dry in the home opener, was strong, saving 20 shots. He failed to make the big save at the end but the Golden Knights’ precision on the play was impressive.
Unlike opening night against the Flyers when he was yanked after allowing five goals on 16 shots, Fleury was sensational this time around. He had a number of difficult stops and finished with 26 saves.
• With only 12 forwards right now, the Flyers needed Konecny, who left practice early Friday after taking a puck to the skate. He played and didn’t look too limited. At times, he skated somewhat gingerly. He played 11:50 and had three hits.
• The Flyers’ forwards are becoming the walking wounded. Laughton eventually returned to the bench early in the third period after his spill into the boards. Oskar Lindblom was also shaken up after taking a hard check during the third. The hit by Brayden McNabb was questionable.
• The Flyers are off Sunday then practice Monday before hosting the Panthers Tuesday at 7 p.m. on NBCSP. It’s Jakub Voracek Chia Pet Giveaway Night (seriously).
Beards…They grow on you.
And when the #Flyers host the Panthers, one can start growing on your Jake Voracek Chia Pet. Get your 🎟️ for Oct. 16 today!
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) October 11, 2018