In the final two minutes of the second period, the Flyers were facing a momentum-swinging moment. The Devils were about to go on a two-minute 5-on-3 with two of their top penalty killers in the box.
Sometimes, your best penalty killer has to be the guy in goal. A spectacular save by Carter Hart proved just that.
Hart made a sprawling save on Taylor Hall during the Flyers successful kill of the 5-on-3 to preserve a 1-0 lead. He stopped the rest of the 24 shots faced for his first career shutout in a 4-0 win over the Devils on Wednesday night at Wells Fargo Center.
The first period started with some decent pace before turning to the usual trap game the Devils play. Chances were limited and the Devils started to push play late in the period after an early energy burst and a failed power-play attempt by the Flyers.
Shots in the period were 10-6 New Jersey, including a great stop by Hart on Hall on a cross-ice pass through the slot by Nikita Gusev.
The Flyers came out with much more pressure to start the second and started to get quality chances on Cory Schneider. Claude Giroux had Schneider beaten on a partial breakaway, but hit the post.
Midway through the second, the Flyers got another power play and this time capitalized. Ivan Provorov unleashed a slap shot from the left circle that beat Schneider to make it 1-0 at 9:52.
Shortly after the power-play goal, the Flyers found themselves on a penalty kill. With 12 seconds left on a tripping penalty to Kevin Hayes, Michael Raffl was also whistled for tripping, giving the Devils a brief 5-on-3. The Flyers held the Devils without any shots for the next two minutes, and shortly after emerging from the box, Raffl got a breakaway and hit the post himself.
With 2:31 left in the second, the Devils got another chance as Sean Couturier was called for delay of game. On the ensuing face-off, Hayes was whistled for a face-off violation, giving the Devils a full two minutes of 5-on-3 time. The Devils got a great chance early with Jack Hughes setting up Hall for a one-timer, but Hart sprawled across and made a fantastic save. The Devils were not able to convert on the rest of the power play and the Flyers finished the period with a successful 5-on-3 kill.
After two periods, shots were 21-17 Flyers.
With momentum following the dramatic penalty kill, the Flyers took control of the game early in the third. An early tripping penalty put them on the power play and Hayes scored his first goal as a Flyer off a face-off to make it 2-0 just 33 seconds into the period.
Just 24 seconds later, Couturier scored his first goal of the season to make it 3-0.
Midway through the period, Travis Konecny put the game away by capitalizing off a Devils turnover and scoring his third goal in two games to make it 4-0.
Hart took care of the rest, stopping all eight shots in the third period to preserve his first career shutout, a 25-save effort. Schneider finished with 30 saves on 34 shots in the loss.
This marks the Flyers first 2-0-0 start to a season since the 2011-12 season, the last time they won a playoff series. The Flyers were 2-for-4 on the power play while going a perfect 5-for-5 on the penalty kill.
The Flyers now travel on a Western Canada road trip, heading to Vancouver for their next game against the Canucks on Saturday night at 10 p.m.
- No Scoring
- PHI Ivan Provorov (1) PP (Matt Niskanen, Travis Konecny) 9:52
- PHI Kevin Hayes (1) PP (Claude Giroux) 0:33
- PHI Sean Couturier (1) (Oskar Lindblom, Provorov) 0:57
- PHI Konecny (3) (Unassisted) 11:46