Flyers Postgame Report: Flyers Comeback Falls Short in OT

Flyers Postgame Report: Flyers Comeback Falls Short in OT Claus Andersen/Getty Images

Prior to the All-Star break, the Flyers were getting regularly victimized by the top players in the NHL. Nathan MacKinnon, Nikita Kucherov, and David Pastrnak had all taken over games against the Flyers within a one-week span, after Connor McDavid did it to start the month of January.

On Thursday night, it was Auston Matthews turn. In the first meeting between the Flyers and Toronto Maple Leafs this season, the Flyers were winning the battle and silencing Toronto’s top stars for the first half of regulation. But in the final 10 minutes of the second period, Matthews turned it on and scored a natural hat trick.

But the Flyers have been a resilient team all season, and erased the margin in the third to force overtime. They earned a point, but the comeback fell short as William Nylander scored the game-winner 54 seconds into overtime to seal a 4-3 loss for the Flyers.

The Leafs got an early opportunity on the power play, but the Flyers power kill struck again to open the scoring. Travis Konecny hit the post on a breakaway, but was able to stay with the puck to maintain possession. Konecny got the puck to Scott Laughton, who centered for an open Travis Sanheim, who scored his fifth goal of the season at 7:42. It was the Flyers 13th shorthanded goal of the season.

Through 20 minutes, shots were 10-8 Flyers.

The Flyers managed to limit opportunities for the Leafs to the midpoint of regulation. But at 11:05, one of their key contributors found open space and took advantage. Matthews scored his 43rd goal of the season to even things at one with a wrist shot from the high slot.

That woke the Leafs up, and on a power play just three minutes later, Matthews struck again on a one-timer to make it 2-1 with his 44th of the season.

With 1:05 remaining in the period, Matthews capped off the period by completing the hat trick, wristing another shot by Sam Ersson to make it 3-1 on his 45th goal of the season.

Through two periods, shots were 21-20 Flyers.

For most of the third period, the Flyers were held at bay. But with 5:46 remaining, the comeback began.

Garnet Hathaway put home a rebound off a Nick Seeler shot to make it 3-2 with his fifth goal of the season. Seconds later, the Flyers got a power play, and took advantage at 15:15 as Konecny buried a loose puck for his 26th goal of the season to tie the game at three.

That forced overtime, which lasted just 54 seconds. The Flyers never possessed the puck and got caught in a line change as Nylander got space, firing a shot through the five-hole of Ersson to seal the victory.

Ersson made 24 saves on 28 shots in the loss. Ilya Samsonov made 29 saves on 32 shots in the win.

Konecny had a goal and an assist for the Flyers. In addition to Matthews hat trick, Mitch Marner had three assists. Timothy Liljegren had two assists. Nylander had a goal and an assist.

The Flyers next take the ice on Saturday night for the 2024 NHL Stadium Series from MetLife Stadium against the New Jersey Devils at 8 p.m.

Box Score

1 2 3 OT T
Flyers 1 0 2 0 3
Maple Leafs 0 3 0 1 4

Scoring Summary

1st Period

  • PHI Travis Sanheim (5) SH (Scott Laughton, Travis Konecny) 7:42

2nd Period

  • TOR Auston Matthews (43) (Mitch Marner) 11:05
  • TOR Matthews (44) PP (Marner, William Nylander) 14:19
  • TOR Matthews (45) (Timothy Liljegren) 18:55

3rd Period

  • PHI Garnet Hathaway (5) (Nick Seeler, Ryan Poehling) 14:14
  • PHI Konecny (26) PP (Owen Tippett, Joel Farabee) 15:15


  • TOR Nylander (27) (Liljegren, Marner) 0:54

Game Statistics

Flyers Maple Leafs
Shots 32 28
Power Play 1/3 1/3
Hits 49 50
Faceoff % 44% 56%
Giveaways 9 10
Takeaways 9 8
Blocked Shots 21 19
Penalty Minutes 25 15
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