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Fly-By: Flyers 3, Sabres 2

by Staff Writer / Philadelphia Flyers
Wednesday, November 2, 2011

3 - 2
FINAL 1 2 3 T
Flyers 3 0 0 3
Sabres 0 1 1 2
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PHI:   S. Couturier (01:43 - 1st) , J. van Riemsdyk (01:56 - 1st) , S. Hartnell (06:23 - 1st)
BUF:   A. Sekera (07:49 - 2nd) , L. Adam (08:29 - 3rd)

 BUF: J. Enroth , R. Miller (L)

The Flyers came out with guns blazin’.

Seven shots in the first six minutes of the game and three goals to open up a 3-0 lead that ended with Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller being pulled shortly after.

Unusual for the Sabres because entering tonight’s game they had only given up four first-period goals (second best in the entire NHL).

The Flyers on the other hand came into tonight’s game the No. 1 team in the NHL scoring in the opening period with 16 tallies, now 19.

That’s all the Flyers would need, but their work was by no means finished.

The Sabres came out a desperate hockey team in the second period, and after scoring their first goal of the night, had two consecutive power plays to get right back in the game.

It was all for not as the Flyers PK withstood both of them and all five to earn their second straight victory and improve their mark on the road to 4-1.

The Flyers held on for the one-goal victory, thanks to goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov who fought off two good scoring chances in the final minute of play.

The Flyers will play the second half of games on back-to-back nights when they return home on Thursday to take on Atlantic Division rival, the New Jersey Devils.

* Tonight’s three goals were the fastest for the Flyers at the start of the game since November 15, 2001 when they scored three in 3:40 en route to a 5-0 win vs. Washington. It ties for the 16th-fastest three goals in a game in team history.  Those faster are listed below.

* Scott Hartnell now has ten points in his last five games (5G, 5A) and has scored in three consecutive games.
* Jaromir Jagr has eight points (5-3-8) in his last five games.
* Claude Giroux played 25:01 tonight, which is the second-most he’s ever played in a regulation-time game, regular season or playoffs.  He played 25:27 at Tampa Bay on Feb. 1, 2011.
* The Flyers were outshot 15-5 in the second period, which ties for the largest shot differential against the Flyers this season.  They were outshot 17-7 in the third period of the home opener vs. Vancouver.
* The Flyers were outshot 31-26 on the game, just the third time that has happened in the first 12 games of the season.
* The Flyers are outshooting opponents 135-94 in the first period of games this season.  They have outshot their opponent in 25 of their 36 periods so far this year.

Ilya Bryzgalov
Tonight’s star goes to goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov.

Bryzgalov stopped 29 of 31 shots, but was certainly tested late in the third period when it was a one-goal game.

The Sabres top scorer, Thomas Vanek had not one, but two ideal scoring chances to force overtime for the Sabres, but Bryzgalov was up to the task on both occasions, one of which came in the game’s last 10 seconds off a wrist shot from 15 feet away.

Bryzgalov has now posted back-to-back wins for the Flyers.

“That first five minutes was some of the best hockey we played so far.  We were fast, we were hitting, we were getting loose pucks."
- Scott Hartnell

"The third period I thought was a good period. We got caught with a tough one behind the net. We held them to one-two chances prior to that final flurry, so I think we came back and played really hard in the third."
- Peter Laviolette

"If somebody were to tell us before the game that we're going to be up 3-0 early - in Buffalo, we're going to take it."
- Jaromir Jagr
Tonight's turning point came within the first six minutes of the game.

Scott Hartnell ripped a shot from just inside the left circle above the shoulder of Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller in almost identical fashion of teammate James van Riemsdyk moments earlier, to give the Flyers a 3-0 lead.

As a result the Sabres pulled their star netminder. The goal also proved to be the difference maker, as the Sabres would fight back to get a pair of their own goals and make it a close game. 

PIC OF THE NIGHT: The Sabres crash the net around Bryzgalov looking for the game-tying goal.

Flyers 3, Sabres 2
Associated Press

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Ilya Bryzgalov shrugged off two terrific saves the same way he shook off a pair of fluky goals.

Bryzgalov denied Sabres leading scorer Thomas Vanek's two attempts on the doorstep over the final 16 seconds, and the Philadelphia Flyers chased All-Star goalie Ryan Miller with three early goals in a 3-2 victory Wednesday night.

After having the first Buffalo goal bank in off his leg, and the second go off a defenseman's skate, Bryzgalov saved the day with his outstanding stops on Vanek.

"You know, I just try and stop the puck," he said.

Miller, though, was unable to do that early on when the Sabres were making ill-advised plays. He faced 11 shots before getting pulled 6:23 into the game when Scott Hartnell's slap shot from the top of the left circle whizzed over the goalie's left shoulder.


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