The Philadelphia Flyers were in Florida returning from their holiday break against the Panthers, who had won three-straight games coming into this one. With the rest of the Metropolitan Division grabbing points on Wednesday, anything short of two points on Thursday would be a loss for the Flyers.
Claude Giroux was happy to be back on the ice.
Wayne Simmonds was in the zone.
Shayne Gostisbehere took an interference penalty just 36 seconds into regulation.
He was not amused.
Brian Elliott got called for tripping just seconds later, putting the Flyers on a 5-on-3.
It certainly wasn’t a trip.
After the Flyers killed off the 5-on-3, they gave up a brutal goal to Jared McCann, who was wide open with all day to shoot.
Andrew MacDonald got into a wrestling match behind the net.
Sean Couturier gave fans a scare after he collided with a Panther near center ice.
That had to hurt.
Then Nolan Patrick took his third penalty in the team’s last four periods of play.
He’s going to need to cut them down.
After one period of play, it was 1-0 Florida.
The second period, like the first, was one to forget for the Flyers.
Scott Laughton took an early hooking penalty, which was their fourth infraction of the game.
Brian Elliott had to make some big saves on the kill.
Robert Hagg then drew a slashing penalty.
But on the power play, Claude Giroux got caught along the boards, allowing the Panthers to get behind them and get a short-handed goal.
Michael Raffl tried to drop the gloves and landed a punch, but that was all the fight the Flyers had in the period.
The team couldn’t get to a loose puck and force a transition. As a result, the Panthers pounced and capitalized quickly.
With this beautiful snipe.
At the end of two periods of play, it was 3-0 Florida.
The Flyers were finally able to get on the board in the third period. After a Panther broke his stick, Travis Konecny skated the other way in transition. He got the puck over to Raffl, who fed Scott Laughton for a great goal with numbers.
Crafty transition passing got the Flyers within two goals.
Shayne Gostisbehere blasted a shot with the goalie pulled to get the Flyers within a goal! It looked to deflect into the net off a stick in front.
Dave Hakstol’s expression best described this game. The Flyers lost 3-2.
The Flyers will play on Friday evening in Tampa Bay against one of the best teams in the NHL. They’ll need a full 60-minute effort to come close to a win over the Lightning.
Photo by Eliot J. Schechter/NHLI via Getty Images)
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