About the game
Let’s get this out of the way. The Flyers stink. They fielded a lineup of rookies and depth players and their goalie was making the second start of his NHL career. Although their lineup was clearly inferior, it was a little disturbing that they dominated early, with the first nine shot attempts and the first five shots on goal. After eight minutes they were outshooting the Rangers 7-1 and the Blueshirts looked like they didn’t know that the game had started. Luckily, Georgiev was ready when they dropped the puck and he made several solid saves to keep the game scoreless.
At 10:20, Kaapo Kakko finally got the Rangers on the board, scoring from the slot. It came off an excellent shift for the third line, cycling in the Flyers zone.
He had just missed scoring earlier, hitting the crossbar, but this time he made no mistakes, taking a feed from Barclay Goodrow and beating Flyer goalie Felix Sandstrom over his glove.
Right after the goal, the Rangers squandered a two many advantage for almost a full two minutes. The power play has been disjointed and it showed as they were guilty of standing around and shooting the puck. They needed some movement to create openings. The Flyers were helped when Chris Kreider and Scott Laughton went off for roughing after Kreider had tried to bang home a rebound. It was a ridiculous call with Laughton cross checking and then punching Kreider who did nothing.
What it did to was take the Rangers best power play weapon off the ice. You could see that Gallant wanted to jump start the power play as he left the first unit on for the entire power play, but they didn’t have any real stellar scoring chances.
The score was still 1-0 midway through the second period when Kakko notched his second goal, this time off a fantastic pass from Filip Chytil.
The Czech did all of the work in the offensive zone and then fed Kakko who was alone in front of the net and easily put the puck home 8:22 in to the period.
Just under three minutes later, Jacob Trouba intercepted a clearing attempt at the blue line and made a perfect pass to Panarin at the goal mouth who one-timed it past Sandstrom.
The third period was almost nonstop action as the teams went over 11:30 without a play stoppage. The Rangers locked down the defense and the Flyers couldn’t mount any kind of threat. Adam Fox took a slashing penalty with 2:19 left and the Flyers pulled Sandstrom, resulting in a shorthanded open net goal scored by Andrew Copp.
As we said, it wasn’t a work of art, but the Rangers were never really in danger of losing this game after they scored the first goal.
Here is a video recap of the game: