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5 Takeaways: Flyers Fall to L.A. in Controversial OT Finish



James van Riemsdyk, Philadelphia Flyers
Flyers left winger James van Riemsdyk is congratulated after giving his team an early lead Tuesday. Photo: AP.

The Los Angeles Kings finally found a way to beat a Metropolitan team.

In a game that had some controversy at the end, the Kings overcame three different deficits Tuesday. They rallied past the Philadelphia Flyers in overtime, 4-3, at the Wells Fargo Center.

The Kings (27-17-6) had been 0-6-1 in games vs. Metro teams this season. They are allowing nearly five goals in games against Metro opponents.

Philly (20-21-8) fell to 1-7 in overtime games.

For the Kings, it was a payback. The Flyers overcame a 2-0 deficit and beat them in L.A. on New Year’s Eve, 4-2.

Here are five quick observations:

1. Call it a controversial win for the Kings.

Down one end, Scott Laughton hit the post in overtime, and Pheonix Copley made a big save on Travis Sanheim’s rebound. Flyers defenseman Tony DeAngelo appeared to be tripped deep in Philly’s offensive end as the Kings raced down the ice. No penalty was called, and that enabled Los Angeles to go on a two-on-one.

Kevin Fiala finished off the rush, and the Kings had the victory.

An incredulous DeAngelo, who finished with a minus-3 rating, screamed at the refs after the game. He got a 10-minute misconduct and a game misconduct.

But at least he got to vent.

Afterward, he said it was a “fact” he was tripped. “That is a clear penalty, not even a question about it,” he said.

His coach disagreed.

“Got to skate. You’ve got to get back,” said John Tortorella, who was generally happy with his team’s performance. “I don’t think it’s a penalty.”

2. Rasmus Ristolainen again showed a sweet offensive move.

The 6-foot-4, 221-pound Finnish defenseman took a pass from Morgan Frost, kicked the puck to his stick, and scored on a backhander from the doorstep. That gave the Philadelphia Flyers a 3-2 lead with 9:23 remaining in the second.

It was his second goal (both on pretty backhanders) in the last five games; Ristolainen did not score in his first 37 games.

3. Wade Allison showed great second effort.

Allison, who is the new #HartnellDown for the Flyers, took a great chip pass from All-Star Kevin Hayes and broke ahead of the pack midway through the first period.

Goalie Pheonix Copley denied his first shot, but the relentless Allison dug out the puck and put home the rebound to give the Flyers a brief 2-1 lead with 9:33 left in the first. (Allison went awkwardly into the boards with a little under nine minutes left in the second, but returned to the action.)

“We did a lot of good things tonight,” Allison said, “and we just have to take that into the next game.”

The teams had exchanged first-period power-play goals, which were scored by James van Riemsdyk (eighth goal) and L.A. captain Anze Kopitar. Van Riemsdyk took a slick feed from Owen Tippett to score on a two-on-one down low.

4. Defensive lapses cost the Flyers.

Just 73 seconds after Allison’s seventh goal of the season, Kopitar tied it at 2-all with his second tally of the night.

Adrian Kempe circled behind the net untouched, and he whipped out a feed to an uncovered Kopitar, a deadly veteran who should never be left alone. He knocked a 19-foot shot past Carter Hart.

Defensemen Sanheim and DeAngelo, and left winger van Riemsdyk were beaten defensively on the goal.

5. The Kings pressured Hart in the latter stages of the second.

L.A. swarmed the net in the last five minutes of the second, and tied the game at 3-3 with 1:24 to go in the session. Samuel Fagemo, a 22-year-old rookie, scored after a sequence that started with a DeAngelo turnover.

Earlier in the second, Hart robbed Kopitar from close range with 11:31 left in the period. The 24-year-old goalie kept the score at 3-2 and prevented Kopitar from scoring a hat trick.

A short time later, Hart gloved Jaret Anderson-Dolan’s shot from deep inside the right circle. He also denied Alex Iafallo on a two-on one with 4:34 to go in the second.


Ivan Provorov had a pair of assists, and van Riemsdyk had a goal and a helper. … Nick Seeler had seven hits, blocked four shots, and was plus-1. … On the power play, the Kings went 1 for 5, the Flyers 0 for 3. … The Flyers have scored first in seven of the last nine games. … L.A. won 66 percent faceoffs. … Allison on being on a line with Hayes and Scot Laughton: “They both have a lot of games under their belt. They both really know what they’re doing, and they’re pretty sweet players, so it makes the game a lot easier for me.” … Justin Braun and Kieffer Bellows — remember them? — were again scratched for the Flyers. … Philly has lost two straight for the first time since Dec. 22-23. … The Flyers play road games against Minnesota on Thursday and Winnipeg on Saturday before the All-Star break.

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