The Flyers managed a pair of wins on a three-game road trip and had successfully responded to their first loss of the season. On Sunday night, back on home ice, they played their worst game of the season, falling flat and doing so without the use of some top players on the roster.
James van Riemsdyk left the game in the first period with an injury. In the third period, trailing 2-0, John Tortorella firmly planted Kevin Hayes and Travis Konecny on the bench, rotating nine forwards for the remainder of the Flyers’ 3-0 loss to the San Jose Sharks.
There was little activity in the first period, as both teams struggled to generate much sustained pressure. Shots were 9-7 Flyers after the first 20 minutes.
In the second, both teams got power plays, and the Flyers appeared to make the most of theirs. Off a shorthanded rush for San Jose, the Flyers emerged with numbers and made a nice passing play to get the puck down low to Joel Farabee for an easy tap-in. The play was challenged for offside and after review determined to be offside, taking the goal off the board.
Less than two minutes later, the Sharks were on the board. Following sustained offensive zone pressure, Tomas Hertl centered the puck for Erik Karlsson, who fired a one-timer from the top of the right circle for his third goal of the season at 9:34.
With 1:31 remaining in the period, the Flyers’ struggles continued and a turnover led to another goal. A bad exchange behind the net between Felix Sandstrom and Tony DeAngelo allowed the Sharks to retain possession, and Jaycob Megna‘s point show was deflected in by Steven Lorentz.
Through two periods, shots were 19-14 San Jose.
In the third period, the Flyers led in shots, 16-6, but did so without Hayes and Konecny on the ice, including for a power play with 14:21 to play in a 2-0 game.
With 4:30 to play, the Flyers got Sandstrom to the bench, and the Sharks made quick work of the empty net. Nico Sturm iced the game with a goal with 3:54 to play, making it 3-0.
James Reimer stopped all 30 shots he faced for the shutout win. Sandstrom made 22 saves in the loss.
The Flyers get back on the ice on Thursday night to take on the Florida Panthers at home. Game time is 7 p.m.