Philadelphia Flyers vs Buffalo Sabres Game Recap: Line-up, Score, Game Report, Statistics, Highlights, Three Stars, Rocket Sports Media
|FINAL – OT | Game 32, Home Game 17 | Thursday, March 25, 2021|
|Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA|
Flyers LineupForward lines
James van Riemsdyk – Sean Couturier – Joel Farabee
Claude Giroux – Kevin Hayes – Jakub Voracek
Oskar Lindblom – Nolan Patrick – Travis Konecny
Michael Raffl – Scott Laughton – Nicolas Aube-KubelDefense pairings
Ivan Provorov – Justin Braun
Travis Sanheim – Philippe Myers
Samuel Morin – Shayne GostisbehereGoaltenders
Brian Elliott – Alex LyonScratches
Connor Bunnaman, Carsen Twarynski, Andy Andreoff, Nate Prosser, Erik GustafssonInjuries
Morgan Frost (dislocated shoulder), Robert Hagg (shoulder)
Game Report written by Amy Johnson
For a team who, according to Shayne Gostisbehere, has “lost it’s identity”, the Flyers found a spark of life on Saturday afternoon when Samuel Morin scored his first NHL goal to give Philadelphia a much-needed victory.
Earlier today, Alain Vigneault announced that Brian Elliott would start in net tonight, with Alex Lyon backing up, and that one of those two goaltenders would also start on Wednesday night. That means Carter Hart will get about of week of time of from game action to focus on shoring up weaknesses which have cropped up in his game.
For a team desperately trying to save their season and start to claw their way back up the standings, the Flyers certainly didn’t come out of the gate looking like they had much urgency.
An early penalty kill, thanks to a pretty weak call for hooking against Nicolas Aube-Kubel, put Philadelphia behind the eight-ball and gave Buffalo a head start on the shot clock. After that, the Flyers seemed to play a slow, sleepy game, spending way too much time in the defensive zone and turning the puck over in dangerous situations. Elliott had to be extra sharp on a few occasions to keep the score 0-0
This continued for the bulk of the period, with the Flyers only amassing eight shots on goal through the first 20 minutes of play. The Sabres, on the other hand, took advantage of the situation in their push to snap their extended losing streak. They finally made Philadelphia pay when Henri Jokiharju was left all alone on the right side after Oskar Lindblom lost a board battle and all five guys in white were circled around the action. He easily beat Elliott five-hole to put the Sabres up 1-0.
The downward slide continued through the middle frame, despite the Flyers actually outshooting the Sabres 12-9 in the period. Philadelphia simply did not look like a team battling for playoff positioning, desperate to hold on to hope, scratching and clawing their way back up the standings. They looked like passengers, and Buffalo profited from it.
After Elliott played the puck up the boards, a Sabres player won the foot race to it and Cody Eakin found the back of the net. Brandon Montour added insult to injury when Ivan Provorov blocked a shot in the slot but couldn’t recover the puck or catch Tage Thompson. Thompson dished the puck back to Montour who one-timed it past Elliott.
What’s the one thing the Flyers seem to always do this season? Okay, there are a few things to choose from, but one of the glaring options is digging themselves into a hole and then finding the will to show up in the third period to right the ship. Well, they did it again tonight.
It started when Travis Sanheim pinched in to intercept a puck ringing around the boards. The defenseman centered the puck to Kevin Hayes, who immediately pulled the trigger to put the Flyers on the board.
Vigneault shortened the bench in the third period, sitting Nolan Patrick, Joel Farabee, and Lindblom and putting the onus on his veterans to get the job done. With that in mind, Claude Giroux potted the next goal after Provorov pinched, Jakub Voracek grabbed the puck and shoveled it to Sean Couturier. Couturier quickly passed the puck to Giroux and he tapped it in to pull the team within one.
With the minutes ticking down, the coach pulled Elliott for an extra attacker. The Sabres missed an empty net opportunity, and that’s when Couturier managed to get a puck through traffic to tie the game.
Overtime didn’t last long when Provorov ripped a shot off a two-on-one feed from Travis Konecny.
What’s Next?Despite the win, the Flyers can’t be satisfied with this game. For almost 40 minutes they played like a disjointed, sleepy group and put themselves in danger of allowing Buffalo to snap their 17-game winless streak. They play the Sabres again on Wednesday, and hopefully they’ll figure out a way to play with that fire in the belly for the complete game, not just hope to piece it together in the waning minutes.
Plus / Minus
▲ Ivan Provorov, Sean Couturier, Claude Giroux
▼ Joel Farabee, Oskar Lindblom, Samuel Morin
|0 for 2||Power Play||0 for 2|
Stars of the Game
|NHL Official Three Stars|
What Did They Say?
Kevin Hayes: “It’s an honor to play in this league and in this organization… It ultimately came down to hard work.”
Quotes courtesy of the Philadelphia Flyers
|Follow @TheAHLReport and @TheFlyersReport on Twitter|
"There's not a better sight in hockey than a team celebrating a guy's goal who has been through so much."— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) March 29, 2021
Relive @sammorin55's GWG with the @tcs_na Heads Up Play of the Week. pic.twitter.com/AAyFmFoBZg