By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor
In many games this season, the Flyers have been able to tip their caps to Carter Hart for having a chance to win a game. That was the situation again, as the Flyers faced a one-goal deficit that could have easily been larger entering the third period.
This time, the Flyers rewarded Hart's efforts, scoring two goals in the third period to rally back for a 2-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday night, as Hart completed the victory with 39 saves.
Both teams appeared even at the start, but after the Flyers struggled on yet another power play that ended with 33 seconds remaining on it, Carolina started to take control. A parade to the penalty box in the first period, saw the Hurricanes get two abbreviated power plays and the Flyers get a golden opportunity late in the period.
After Jordan Staal took an interference penalty to nullify a Carolina power play with 55 seconds remaining, Travis Sanheim drew a tripping penalty on Vincent Trocheck. While arguing the call, Trocheck took an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty as well, giving the Flyers four minutes of power-play time as well as 1:05 of 5-on-3 time. The Flyers did not get anything generated in the remainder of the first, even giving up a shorthanded breakaway chance to Staal out of the box at the close of the period.
The Flyers didn't start the second any better, letting the remaining 2:08 of power-play time go by the wayside. The Hurricanes eventually got back into a rhythm and took control again, finally breaking through for the game's first goal at 11:14. Steven Lorentz took control of the puck in the neutral zone and maneuvered his way into the offensive zone. Sean Couturier was able to take the puck away, but blindly tried to clear it out, and it was held in by Staal. Staal fired a shot wide that bounced to the side of the net for Jesper Fast, who had his chance flutter back across the crease. Lorentz was there to bat it out of the air and in to make it 1-0 Carolina.
Just 45 seconds later, Carolina appeared to strike again. Another broken play at the net resulted in a goal as Seth Jarvis knocked in a rebound as his stick was broken, making it a 2-0 game. But after a Flyers challenge, the play was ruled offside and the goal was disallowed.
The Flyers spent the remainder of the period fending off the Hurricanes nonetheless. They survived two power-play chances and had to get some clutch saves from Hart, including a diving stop on a partially blocked shot at the final horn.
The Flyers came out firing in the third, opening up a 10-1 lead in shots to open the period. At 4:06, one of those shots finally found the net. Joel Farabee raced into the zone to catch up to a bank pass, going in alone on goal and beating Frederik Andersen through the five-hole to tie the game at one.
The Flyers kept the pressure on and turned it into another goal at 10:20. A point shot by Justin Braun was deflected in by Zack MacEwen for his first goal as a Flyer to make it 2-1.
From there, the Flyers had to lean on Hart again. Carolina finished the period with 11 of the final 15 shots on goal, and got a power play almost immediately after the Flyers took the lead. Even with a power play of their own in the final six minutes of the game, the Hurricanes got the better chances.
Hart stood tall, making all 12 saves in the period to finish the job. Andersen finished with 26 saves on 28 shots in the loss.
The Flyers get right back on the ice on Saturday night as they take on the Dallas Stars at 8 p.m.