By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor
Playing against a top-three team in the league for the second straight game, it showed the Flyers are far from the level of the opposition. That said, they entered another third period in a familiar situation: tied where it counts most.
For most of the third period, the Flyers held their own, keeping the game tied and generating a few chances in their own right. But as has happened many times before, the Carolina Hurricanes got the last laugh, as Jordan Martinook scored on a deflection with 3:50 remaining in the third for the game-winning goal in a 3-1 loss for the Flyers on Saturday afternoon.
Carolina outplayed the Flyers in the first period, opening up a 15-10 margin in shots. Both teams had power-play chances and did not score, keeping the game scoreless through 20 minutes.
It was more of the same in the second, as Carolina continued to control play. It finally resulted in a goal at 8:34. Derek Stepan made a nice reverse pass behind the net to Steven Lorentz, who fired one home from an angle to make it 1-0 with his seventh goal of the season. The assist for Stepan was his 500th NHL point.
With 3:10 remaining in the period, the Flyers responded after having a goal waved off for goalie interference. Derick Brassard, the player who made contact with Frederik Andersen on the disallowed goal, picked up a rebound and scored for his 200th NHL goal at 16:50.
Despite the early push by Carolina, the Flyers closed with a strong final 10 minutes of the second period, outshooting Carolina, 14-12, in the middle period. Through two periods, shots were 27-24 Carolina.
Shots on goal were few and far between in the third period, as Carolina only managed nine to the Flyers five in the period. With 3:50 remaining in the third, one of those shots from a distance managed to find the net.
Off a failed clear by Ivan Provorov, Vincent Trocheck put a shot on goal that was tipped in the slot by Martinook for his third goal of the season, making it a 2-1 game.
The Flyers pulled the goalie moments later, and with 20 seconds remaining, Sebastian Aho finished off the game with an empty-net goal, his 26th of the season.
Andersen finished with 28 saves on 29 shots in the win. Martin Jones made 33 saves on 35 shots in the loss.
The Flyers get right back on the ice on Sunday night, facing the Montreal Canadiens at home at 7 p.m.