The Flyers dropped their second straight game, but this time at the hands of an opponent they had dominated for the last two-plus seasons.
There were no excuses from the players and coaches. The Flyers were second to every race, fight to and for the puck, and in the end, on the scoreboard in a 4-2 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes.
"I think they buried us,” said Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette post-game. “We were a second everywhere and when we did get there late, we weren't strong enough in the battles."
His assistant captain whole-heartedly agreed.
“He was right. We were flat today,” said Kimm Timonen. “I think from the start of the game to the end of the game. It’s hard to tell why, but it’s one of those things, it happens even though you don’t want it to happen, it happens.
The loss of Braydon Coburn (upper-body) and captain Chris Pronger (virus) not only left a void of two of the Flyers top five players with the most time-on-ice, but also two of their top D-men on the power play and penalty kill.
The Flyers gave up two goals on the man-advantage for the second straight game and just the fifth time all year.
However it wasn’t the penalty-killing unit that players and coach Laviolette said should take the fall, it also lies on the shoulders of the penalty takers.
"I have said we have taken too many penalties for weeks,” added Laviolette.
The Flyers will look to end their current mini-skid on Long Island when they take on the Islanders on Wednesday.
- Matt Read extended his goal scoring streak to five games with his goal tonight. He now has six goals in that span. It’s the longest goal scoring streak for a Flyers rookie since Mikael Renberg scored in six consecutive games from March 24-April 2, 1994.
- Per the Elias Sports Bureau, tonight’s was the 264th game in Flyers history that featured at least two members of the Sutter family. Brandon & Brett Sutter are the first two members of the second generation of the family to play in the same game in Philadelphia. The previous 263 involved the six Sutter brothers, most of which featured Ron and Rich Sutter, who played for the Flyers together for three seasons from 1983-86.
- The Flyers have now allowed the first goal in two consecutive games after scoring first in ten consecutive games. They have only allowed the first goal on five occasions in 20 games this season; they are 2-3-0 when doing so.
- The Flyers fell to 0-6-0 when trailing after two periods.
- Sixteen of the Flyers’ 18 skaters recorded at least one hit tonight.
- Braydon Coburn missed tonight's game for just the eighth time in his Flyers career. He has played in 360 of 368 games as a Flyer.
JVR was a factor in both Flyers goals on the night, recording the first goal on a second effort of a wrap around attempt that he slid through the legs of Cam Ward.
He also showed his speed by driving to the net, and eventually around the net again to feed Matt Read to pull the Flyers within one again midway through the second period.
"It's hard to say...I would not point at the goaltender. Like I said, the game is about competition, getting to the hard areas and then its about getting numbers and support there. Then, when you're inside of it, it's about winning the battles." - Peter Laviolette
“I wouldn’t blame it on the PK. I think we’ve been in the box too much. I mean most guys have done a great job all year long and it gets to a point if you keep taking penalties it’s going to eventually bite you in the end. So we’ve got to really clean that up.” - James van Riemsdyk
After two first period goals by the Hurricanes, the Flyers fought back twice in the contest to bring it to within one goal.
Carolina once and for all killed all of the Flyers momentum in their comeback attempt when Alexei Ponikarovsky scored the Canes' fourth goal of the night with 1:27 left in the second period.
The goal was the second of the night on the power play for Carolina and the second that the Hurricanes scored with under a minute and a half to play in the period.
PIC OF THE NIGHT: Claude Giroux dives for a puck on the Flyers' power play.
Hurricanes 4, Flyers 2 Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Alexei Ponikarovsky had two goals and an assist and Chad LaRose had a goal and two assists and the Carolina Hurricanes earned a 4-2 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday night.
Jeff Skinner also scored and Cam Ward made 30 saves for Carolina, which got its first victory in Philadelphia since Nov. 28, 2008.