Flyers

Flyers beat the Vegas Golden Knights, 4-1, in improbable fashion

David Becker | NHLI via Getty Images

Your eyes do not deceive you.

The Flyers were outshot 39-17 but still found a way to walk away with 2 points in the final game of their short West coast trip.

The Golden Knights were pushing the pace in the first period and defenseman Brayden McNabb beat Michal Neuvirth to open the scoring. Once that happened I thought it would only be a matter of time before the Golden Knights really opened it up.

The Flyers didn’t quit. They managed to get a good chance later in the period when Claude Giroux kept the puck in the offensive zone, found Travis Konecny who laid a laser to Sean Couturier on the doorstep who got the puck past Marc-Andre Fleury.

The first period ended without another goal.

The Golden Knights came out to play in the second period. They actually dominated the first 16 minutes and some change. Neuvirth did a great job of keeping the Flyers within striking distance, which paid off late in the period where the Flyers scored two goals in the last three minutes and some change to take a 3-1 lead into the second period.

More of the same happened in the third period. The Flyers, by order of their coach or the fact that they were tired, played to protect the lead for a good portion of the final period. It ended up paying off as Radko Gudas scored the empty net goal to put the game on ice.

This was the strangest four goal performance I saw out of the Flyers. With that said, let’s look to the four takeaways:

1. Goaltending.

Michal Neuvirth stood on his head for the Flyers. He allowed one goal on 39 shots, that’s incredible. This performance should give him a nice confidence boost as he might be getting some extended looks while Elliott nurses a lower body injury. If Neuvy can keep up this level of play the Flyers will maintain their good positioning for the playoffs…

2. Positioning.

The Flyers currently hold the third seed in the Metropolitan division. They are one point behind the Pittsburgh Penguins who are in second place, and five points behind the Washington Capitals who are the one seed. They have a five point lead over the Carolina Hurricanes who currently hold the last wildcard spot. So for those optimists out there, the Flyers are just as close to the top seed in the Metro as they are to the final wildcard spot. That is something to be excited about considering they were on a 10-game winless skid earlier this season.

3. Confidence is key.

This Flyers team won a game they had no business winning against the best team in the Western Conference. This truly shows how gritty this team can be. The Orange and Black went into a road environment against a team that has been really good at home after taking the Coyotes to a shootout and walked out with two points. This should be a huge confidence boost for the team as a whole. It shows they can compete with the best of the best in the NHL. This was a huge two points and the team knows it. They can’t slow down now.

4. True top line.

The Flyers top line accounted for seven points on Sunday night. Claude Giroux had a goal and an assist, Sean Couturier had a goal and two assists, and Travis Konecny had two assists.

I feel like I could go on and on about these three, but I’ll keep it short and sweet: these three guys are perfectly in sync. The play of these three guys are paramount to the Flyers success. They each bring something unique to the table which is working perfectly for them.

The Flyers return to action on Tuesday at home against the New Jersey Devils. Puck drops at seven o’clock.

 


You can follow Anthony Mazziotti on Twitter (@AntMazziotti) and e-mail him at anthonymazziottiwriting@gmail.com.

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