It had been nearly a month since Carter Hart's last appearance. As the young netminder sat out with an injury, the Flyers posted a 6-2-1 record in the nine games he missed. On Monday, it seemed like everything picked up where it left off.
Hart was solid and the Flyers picked up a 4-1 win over the Florida Panthers to maintain their pace in the playoff race.
The Panthers opened the scoring early at 3:07. After some confusion on a delayed offside, the Panthers gained possession in the Flyers zone and went to work. Aaron Ekblad fired a shot that was blocked, but deflected right to the other point where MacKenzie Weegar was waiting. Weegar fired low and beat Hart through the five-hole to make it 1-0 Florida.
For most of the period, Florida held control of the game, but the Flyers started to push back in the final 10 minutes and got the game tied as a result.
Ivan Provorov fired a shot high that beat Sergei Bobrovsky to even the score with his 10th goal of the season at 13:58.
Through 20 minutes, the Flyers had an 11-10 lead in shots.
The Flyers were able to capitalize on an opportunity at 5:24 of the second period to get the lead. In the middle of a line change, Justin Braun poked the puck beside the Flyers bench. Jake Voracek hopped on and knocked the puck away from Ekblad, entering the zone with space. Voracek had James van Riemsdyk with him on a mini 2-on-0, and he put a pass across to van Riemsdyk for the tip-in goal to make it 2-1 Flyers.
In the final minute of the period, the Flyers added to the lead. Off a rush, Scott Laughton centered for van Riemsdyk and the puck was tipped on goal. Bobrovsky could not cover and the puck sat in the crease for Travis Sanheim to bury the rebound with 51.1 seconds left to make it a 3-1 game.
Through two periods, the Flyers led in shots, 24-20.
The Flyers maintained the two-goal lead throughout the third period. While they were not able to build on it with some brief 5-on-3 time, they did kill off two penalties in the period to preserve the lead.
In the closing moments of the third, Claude Giroux iced the game with an empty-net goal while the Flyers were shorthanded after Jonathan Huberdeau was unable to bury a loose puck at the side of the net into an open net.
Hart finished the game with 30 saves on 31 shots. Bobrovsky made 30 saves on 33 shots.
The Flyers get back on the ice on Tuesday night in another tough matchup against the New York Islanders at 7 p.m.
- FLA MacKenzie Weegar (4) (Aaron Ekblad, Aleksander Barkov) 3:07
- PHI Ivan Provorov (10) (Matt Niskanen, Tyler Pitlick) 13:58
- PHI James van Riemsdyk (16) (Jake Voracek, Justin Braun) 5:24
- PHI Travis Sanheim (8) (van Riemsdyk, Scott Laughton) 19:08
- PHI Claude Giroux (15) SH-EN (Unassisted) 18:51