Flyers 2 (25-19-9, 59 PTS) @ Hurricanes 1 (24-21-9, 57 PTS) F/OT
Jordan Weal scored with 3.1 seconds remaining in overtime to defeat the Carolina Hurricanes tonight at the PNC Arena. It was Weal’s 7th goal of the season, and his first career goal in the extra period. Wayne Simmonds scored the other goal for the Flyers, his 18th of the year and Brian Elliot picked up the win while making 27 saves on 28 shots in his first start since January 23rd.
Carolina opened up the scoring with less than 5 minutes to play in the first period. The goal came on the back end of a double minor called against Nolan Patrick. After getting hemmed in for over a minute on the penalty kill, the Flyers were made to pay for by leaving Elias Lindholm all alone in front of Brian Elliot. Elliot made the initial save but Lindholm corralled his own rebound and beat Elliot for his 15th of the season.
— Carolina Hurricanes (@NHLCanes) February 7, 2018
Philadelphia had 11 shots to the Hurricanes 10, but Carolina converted one of their three power play attempts in the period while the Flyers went 0-for-2.
Both teams traded power play opportunities throughout the period but neither team was able to convert on their man advantages. Elliot and Cam Ward made the saves they are expected to make, and each net minder came up with a big save or two of their own to keep the game at 1-0 in Carolinas favor. Philadelphia tied the game courtesy of Wayne Simmonds with 3:17 to go in the second stanza. The Train’s 18th goal of the season came off a busted play and some sloppy passing, Simmonds found himself in his favorite spot in front of Ward’s crease and buried Jake Voracek’s rebound past Ward.
Wayne Simmonds ties it in his 500th NHL game! pic.twitter.com/ngOchrOUia
— Flyers Nation (@FlyersNation) February 7, 2018
In the final 20 minutes of regulation, both teams had stretches where they dominated play. Philadelphia controlled most of the play in the 3rd, while Carolina had a shorter burst of energy but both teams came away empty handed. The Flyers made a heavy push towards the end of the 3rd and outshot Carolina 7-2 in the period, but they were unable to finish the game off in regulation.
Both teams traded chances back and forth in the 3-on-3 period, most notably Brian Elliot standing on his head with a little help from Claude Giroux against Jeff Skinner extremely late in the 5 minute period. But, the Flyers left it even later. With 3.1 seconds left to go before that dreaded shootout, Jordan Weal squeaked the puck through Cam Ward’s five hole to give Philadelphia the additional point. Weal picked up the puck and skated into Carolina’s zone, made a move to the inside and his forehand and wristed his 7th of the season past Ward for the overtime winner.
Tonight was Wayne Simmonds 500th career game as a Flyer, and what better way to celebrate it than with a goal. Since joining Philadelphia in the 2011-2012 season, Simmonds has tallied 180 goals and 157 assists. Congratulations Wayne!
With his 52 assist of the season, Jake Voracek surpassed his point tally from last year. He racked up 61 points in 82 games, and he’s already passed that mark in 29 fewer games. It’s awesome getting to see #93 back at his best this season.
Speaking of someone preforming to their full potential, can we talk about the progression Nolan Patrick has made this season? He looks so much more confident with his game compared to just a month ago. It was always going to take some time for him to adjust to the NHL; and the early injury certainly did him no favors, but it’s great to see the rookie starting to come into his own during this important stretch.
Flyers vs Canadiens, 1/8/18 @ 7:00 P.M.