Saturday night, the Philadelphia Flyers finished up their three-game trip in California with an overtime win over the Anaheim Ducks, 3-2.
After getting shut down by Jonathan Quick in their last game, the Flyers looked to get back on track with a win against a third California team, and they did just that.
The Flyers opened up the scoring in the first period with a goal by Ivan Provorov set up by a sick feed from Nolan Patrick just as a power play expired. It was Provorov’s first goal of the season and Patrick’s first career NHL point.
The Ducks struck back four minutes later with a goal from Antoine Vermette after a blown assignment from Travis Sanheim. The first period ended in a tie, 1-1.
In the second period, the Flyers pulled ahead again with the top line on the ice, Sean Couturier potted his first of the season assisted by Jakub Voracek and Claude Giroux. Giroux sent a long saucer bank pass from his own zone right to the stick of Voracek who went behind the Ducks net before passing in front to Couturier for the easy tap in.
The second period would end without any further damage but in the third period the Ducks clawed their way back to a tie from a shorthanded goal with Cam Fowler. Fowler picked Giroux’s pocket and flew down the ice and sent a rocket past Elliott for his first of the season.
Regulation would end in a tie, but it only took 44 seconds for Wayne Simmonds to end the game. At the end of a long shift, Simmonds stayed on the ice and called for a behind the back pass from Couturier. Couturier obliged, and Simmonds sent the puck past John Gibson to the back of the net, giving the Flyers the win.
Elliott was solid again, saving 25 of 27 shots and ending with a .913 save percentage; he kept the Flyers in the game until the very end.
The Flyers end their California trip 2-1-0 and head to Nashville Tuesday before coming back to Philly – finally – for their home opener on Saturday.
Notes: Simmonds now has four goals and Voracek has four assists in the first three games of the season. Not to be outdone, Alex Ovechkin has scored seven goals in his first two games of the season. Steve Mason continues to struggle with his new team in Winnipeg, letting up six goals on 45 shots in a loss to the Calgary Flames, falling to 0-2 on the season. The Flyers are tied for first in the Metropolitan Division with the Washington Capitals at the end of the first week of play.