By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor
For two periods, the Flyers had the game in their control. They were getting stellar play from Carter Hart, struck for two goals in the second period, and appeared to be getting better as the game went on.
They gave all of that back in a span of 2:06. Two Bruins goals tied the game early in the third, starting a frantic back-and-forth scoring barrage. Ultimately, the game was capped off with a shootout, and the Flyers couldn't find a way to score while the Bruins got the only goal necessary, winning the game, 5-4.
After killing off an early penalty, the Flyers had the territorial edge early, but struggled to generate shots. A power play went by the wayside and the Bruins slowly shifted the momentum in their favor, getting more zone time as the period progressed.
Hart was outstanding in the first period though, making 14 saves to keep the Bruins off the board. The Flyers managed just three shots on goal in the opening 20 minutes.
Hart continued to keep the Flyers in the game in the second, but a power play for the Flyers opened the door for an opportunity to strike first. The captain delivered.
Claude Giroux scored his first goal of the season on a perfect shot from the left circle, giving the Flyers the 1-0 lead at 6:17.
After getting another power play late in the period, the Flyers nearly let the chance slip away, when they grabbed another goal just seconds after the Bruins were back to full strength. Still maintaining possession in the Bruins zone, Kevin Hayes got the puck across to Jake Voracek, who put it back toward the slot for James van Riemsdyk. He tipped it into the net for his second goal of the season to make it 2-0 Flyers.
During the second period, Mark Friedman left the game after being taken down in a tangle-up with Brad Marchand. Friedman was cut after landing on his head and left the game.
Through 40 minutes, shots were 18-11 Boston.
The Flyers two-goal lead to start the third vanished quickly as the Bruins came out firing.
Just 57 seconds into the period, Jack Studnicka scored his first NHL goal, picking up his own rebound to make it 2-1. Just 1:09 later and just 2:06 into the period, Charlie Coyle scored on a rebound with a turnaround shot, tying the game at two.
The Flyers managed to come back midway through the period. On a rush, Voracek delayed and threw the puck on net as the Flyers closed in on Tuukka Rask. The puck hit the skate of Travis Sanheim and went in, giving the Flyers the lead back.
The Bruins did get the equalizer. After Scott Laughton took a cross-checking penalty with 6:56 left in the third, Patrice Bergeron made a great play to get the puck to the side of the net for Nick Ritchie to tie the game at three with 6:38 remaining.
The Bruins kept the momentum, scoring again with 4:42 remaining in the third as Brandon Carlo fired a one-timer that beat Hart to make it 4-3 Boston.
A penalty call to Sean Kuraly gave the Flyers a power play seconds later, and they took advantage as van Riemsdyk scored his second goal of the game from the side of the net to tie the game at four with 3:32 to play.
That set the stage for overtime, and an already wide-open game became even more frantic. Both teams generated chances in the overtime, with both Voracek and Hayes being robbed by Rask on the doorstep and Laughton missing the net high on a breakaway. Neither team scored and that sent things to a shootout.
In the shootout, Jake DeBrusk scored the lone goal in the third round, lifting the Bruins to the win.
Rask made 22 saves on 26 shots in the win. Hart made 39 saves on 43 shots in the defeat.
The Flyers and Bruins meet again on Saturday night at 7 p.m.