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Flyers Notebook: Effort Aside, Philly Couldn’t Bail Out Carter Hart

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Carter Hart, Philadelphia Flyers
Dougie Hamilton collides with Carter Hart in the first period Saturday. New Jersey outlasted the Flyers, 3-2. Photo: AP.

Goaltender Carter Hart has had the Philadelphia Flyers’ collective backs for most of the season.

They didn’t return the favor Saturday as Hart struggled in a 3-2 loss to visiting New Jersey.

It wasn’t because of a lack of effort, however. The Flyers outplayed best-in-the-NHL New Jersey for a majority of the game. Philly had a 33-18 shots advantage, and outscored the Devils on special teams (1-0).

But Hart was outplayed by Devils backup goalie Akira Schmid (31 saves), and the Flyers (8-12-5) lost for the 12th time in the last 13 games.

The Devils (20-4-1) won their 11th straight road game, a franchise record. Overall, they are on a 17-1-1 run.

“We did a lot of good things,” said right winger Travis Konecny, who scored the Flyers’ first goal. “I love that we stick with it, no matter what was going on out there. … We just battled to the end. There’s a lot of good things to take” from the loss.

“I think we’ve had quite a few of those games where we’ve played very well (and lost),” defenseman Nick Seeler said. “There’s just a couple shifts here and there that have cost us.”

Hart stopped just 15 of 18 shots, and his misplay behind the net led to a third-period goal that gave the Devils a 2-1 lead.

“We played a great game … I need to make some more saves there,” Hart said.

The schedule doesn’t ease up for the Flyers.

Philly will finish off a five-game homestand by facing the defending champion Colorado Avalanche (13-8-1) on Monday, and Alex Ovechkin and Washington (10-12-4) on Wednesday.  The Flyers are 1-2 on the homestand.

Like the Flyers, the Avs and Capitals have been crippled by injuries. The latter two teams, however, have much more depth to compensate.

Breakaways

Konecny has 15 points (5-10) in his last 13 games. He played a career-high 24:24, and his goal was his team-leading ninth of the season. … Kevin Hayes has 15 points in his last 15 games …. Scott Laughton had a career-high seven shots Saturday. … The Flyers are 5-7-1 at home. … Lukas Sedlak, claimed off waivers from Colorado six weeks ago, has five points (2-3) in his last four games. He will face his former teammates Monday.

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