The return from the All-Star break can present some immediate challenges. Teams can experience some rust after a long layoff. In the Flyers case, it wasn't rust, but more of the same old bad habits that continue to get in the way.
The Detroit Red Wings took the lead in the second period and never looked back, finishing off a 6-3 result on Wednesday night at Wells Fargo Center.
The Red Wings got off to a fast start with a couple of quality shifts to draw a penalty. Their All-Star wasted little time taking advantage.
Just 2:43 into the game, Dylan Larkin attempted a pass to the netfront that deflected off Ivan Provorov and in to make it 1-0 Detroit.
Just 20 seconds later, the Flyers answered, as Zack MacEwen's shot into a crowd deflected off Isaac Ratcliffe and went in for his first NHL goal. Detroit challenged and was unsuccessful, leading to a Flyers power play. They were not able to convert.
The Red Wings were able to re-take the lead at 6:02. Lucas Raymond was able to stay with the play and picked up his own rebound twice before scoring his 12th of the season to make it 2-1.
Again, the Flyers had a quick answer. Travis Sanheim buried a feed from Claude Giroux to even things up at two just 24 seconds later.
Shots in the opening period were 15-11 Detroit.
The Red Wings grabbed the lead back at 6:12 of the second. Pius Suter finished off a dominant shift with a goal, his 11th of the season, to make it 3-2.
Five minutes later, the Red Wings extended the lead as Robby Fabbri took a feed and beat Carter Hart to make it 4-2 with his 13th of the season.
Just 21 seconds later, the Flyers struck back again. Scott Laughton was on the doorstep to bury his chance, getting the Flyers back to within one with his eighth of the season.
Through two periods, the Red Wings had a 26-19 lead in shots.
The Flyers managed just five shots in the final 20 minutes. Detroit added an insurance goal at 8:46 of the period, as Givani Smith beat Hart through the five-hole. Vladislav Namestnikov scored into an empty net to ice the game with 55 seconds remaining.
Alex Nedeljkovic finished with 21 saves on 24 shots. Hart made 28 saves on 33 shots.
Five Red Wings players finished with multi-point games: Raymond, Larkin, Fabbri, Suter, and Moritz Seider. Nick Seeler had two assists for the Flyers.
The Flyers and Red Wings meet again on Saturday afternoon at noon.
- DET Dylan Larkin (24) PP (Lucas Raymond, Moritz Seider) 2:43
- PHI Isaac Ratcliffe (1) (Zack MacEwen, Nick Seeler) 3:03
- DET Raymond (12) (Filip Hronek, Larkin) 6:02
- PHI Travis Sanheim (3) (Claude Giroux, Oskar Lindblom) 6:26
- DET Pius Suter (11) (Robby Fabbri, Tyler Bertuzzi) 6:12
- DET Fabbri (13) (Suter, Seider) 11:00
- PHI Scott Laughton (8) (Travis Konecny, Seeler) 11:21
- DET Givani Smith (4) (Joe Veleno, Gustav Lindstrom) 8:46
- DET Vladislav Namestnikov (13) EN (Sam Gagner) 19:05