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Jagr scores twice in Flyers' win over Leafs

by Adam Kimelman
PHILADELPHIA -- Jaromir Jagr said he wasn't pressing to score his first NHL goal in three seasons, but said he was ready to try just about anything to put the puck in the net.

"I changed everything," he said. "The skate, gloves. I got hit in the head during warm-ups, so that helped."

After the game he had Monday against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Jagr should get a reinforced helmet.

Jagr scored his first two goals of the season on breakaways, and Scott Hartnell also had a pair of goals, as the Flyers snapped a two-game losing streak with a 4-2 victory Monday against the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs at the Wells Fargo Center.

Claude Giroux and Kimmo Timonen had 2 assists each, and Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 24 of 26 shots in goal for the victory.

The goals were Jagr's first in the NHL since April 6, 2008.

Overshadowing the victory was the loss of team captain Chris Pronger at 8:02 of the first period when he was hit in the right eye by the stick of Maple Leafs forward Mikhail Grabovski. Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren said Pronger likely will be out 2-3 weeks.

"He's going to see the eye doctor every day for the next four days," said Holmgren. "We think after that he'll be … I don't want to say out of danger, but if everything goes OK and the swelling goes down, he should start on an exercise program sometime after that and we're hoping he could rejoin the team in 10 days to two weeks -- skating-wise, not necessarily playing."

Phil Kessel scored his League-high ninth of the season, and David Steckel also scored for the Leafs.

The multi-goal effort for Hartnell was his first since last season's regular-season finale, April 9 against the Islanders. Just like that night, he had the game-winner against the Leafs on Monday.


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With the score tied 1-1 late in the second period, the Flyers went on the man-advantage when Leafs defenseman Mike Komisarek was sent off for interference. As the power play was winding down, Danny Briere came out from behind the goal line to the right of the Toronto net and sent a pass through the slot to Hartnell, who one-timed it, but Jonas Gustavsson stepped across and stopped it with his left pad. However, Hartnell lunged in for the rebound and shoved it under Gustavsson for his first of the season at 15:46.

"It's nice to get one, even if I had to get on my knees and shovel it in under his pad," said Hartnell. "It's nice to help out, and a good feeling to get the win more importantly."

Hartnell's second of the game came at 8:34 of the third period. Jagr controlled the puck deep in the Toronto end and gave it to Giroux on the wall on the left side of the zone. Giroux backhanded a pass to Hartnell, who one-timed it from the inside of the left circle over Gustavsson's glove.

After Steckel made it a one-goal game at 11:34 by batting a high pass from Matt Frattin off Bobrovsky and into the net, Jagr closed the scoring by burying his second breakaway of the game. Taking a long pass from Hartnell, he broke in alone on Gustavsson and beat him at 15:45 of the third. The last time Jagr had a multi-goal NHL game was April 3, 2008.

Jagr's first goal came late in the first period, on a similar breakaway opportunity. With the Flyers trailing 1-0 but skating on a four-minute power play due to a Joffrey Lupul high-sticking double-minor, Giroux sent breakout pass to Jagr, who split a pair of Leafs defenders at the Toronto blue line and broke in alone on Gustavsson. Jagr beat him high over the stick at 16:22.

"I had three breakaways today," said Jagr. "The first one I scored, the second one I tried to do something different. I thought maybe if I would shoot it, I would have a chance to score (Gustavsson denied him). The third one, I said, 'Why change something that is working?' And he was cheating a little bit. I think he lifted a leg there, but I kind of waited a little longer and I had a spot there."

Jagr said the best part of scoring Monday meant he wouldn't have to be asked about when he would score his first goal.

"Yeah, you guys aren't going to ask me anymore," Jagr said with a laugh. "I'm glad it was tonight."

Flyers coach Peter Laviolette also was happy to see his two big power forwards find the back of the net.

"It's nice to get those guys on the board," he said. "Jaromir had a lot of chances in the early games and lots of opportunity and their line was good. (Hartnell) has now had two solid games in a row, tonight being his best one. It's good to get those guys going, sure."

Toronto took a 1-0 lead on its first shot of the game. Seconds after a Leafs power play came to an end, Flyers rookie forward Brayden Schenn turned the puck over along the wall in the Philadelphia end. John-Michael Liles sent it into the middle, where it hit off the skate of Flyers defenseman Matt Walker and went right to Kessel, who took a stride through the right faceoff circle and fired a shot that beat Bobrovsky high to the short side, over his blocker, at 6:11 of the period.

The game remained tied until late in the second, thanks to outstanding play by Gustavsson, who allowed four goals on 30 shots.

"I thought (Gustavsson) was really good for us," said Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf. "He gave us a chance to win. He made some really big saves. If you look at the goals, he really didn't have much of a chance on any of them, and I thought he was really good for us tonight. I just wish we could have helped him a little bit more."

Contact Adam Kimelman at Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK
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