The Philadelphia Flyers and Nashville Predators played a rough-and-tumble game Saturday afternoon. A turf war. Both teams were blocking shots, getting some chances, and the goaltending was good — except at the end — but it was a struggle for both teams to score.
That was the reality. Both teams are ranked near the bottom of the league in goals per game. Both teams were fighting for the two points.
Nashville got them. The host Flyers got one.
Final: Nashville 2, Flyers 1. In overtime.
The Flyers are 1-9 in overtime.
“These are tough to lose,” defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen said.
It was old-school hockey. Lots of hitting. Lots of defense.
Matt Duchene scored on a wrist shot past Carter Hart 34 seconds into overtime, sending the Flyers to the gut-wrenching loss.
“That’s a goal that you have got to stop,” said Hart, though the shot may have deflected off the skate of defenseman Cam York.
Here are my five takeaways.
1. Both teams were physical.
Nashville finished with 43 hits — three more than the Philadelphia Flyers.
Nick Deslauriers and Nashville’s Jeremy Lauzon each had a game-high nine hits, and the Flyers’ Wade Allison and Tanner Jeannot each had seven.
2. Kevin Hayes stayed hot.
It was 1-1 at 10:40 of the second period. Patrick Brown got the secondary assist. It was Farabee’s first point in 11 games. Hayes has 17 points in his last 17 games.
Hayes had a breakaway with over four minutes to go and missed the net. He finished with eight shot attempts, including five on goal.
Kevin Hayes, my goodness 👀 pic.twitter.com/5rHBpdDwdL
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) February 11, 2023
3. Nashville breaks deadlock.
Nino Niederreiter got his 14th goal of the season at 1:43 of the second, with assists being picked up by Cody Glass and Matt Duchene. Duchene did the hard work with a sharp pass and it was an easy tap-in goal.
It was a 1-0 game at the time, but the Flyers didn’t get discouraged.
EL NIÑO pic.twitter.com/47oOmHpm1L
— Nashville Predators (@PredsNHL) February 11, 2023
4. An unfortunate injury took Nashville’s best player out of the game.
Late in the first period, Filip Forsberg had to be helped off the ice, hitting his head on his landing after a hit by Rasmus Ristolainen.
“I thought it was a clean hit and unfortunate result,” Ristolainen said. “We move on.”
Tanner Jeannot and Nick Deslauriers each got five for fighting 13 seconds into the second period, stemming from the hit on Forsberg. Both are heavyweights. Both landed some shots, but it was a draw.
Later in the period Farabee and Juuso Parssinen “fought” at 12:48. Farabee was responding to a hit Noah Cates took.
5. The Flyers showed great discipline early.
The Philadelphia Flyers had 10 blocked shots in the first period and went five periods without a penalty. That is a positive sign of the coach having an impact on this team. It showed great discipline.
“The two teams play the same way. That doesn’t surprise me at all,” said John Tortorella. “I think we were holding on in the third period. I think there was a lot of bend but don’t break. We were OK. I wish we were more effective. We had some odd-man rushes and we came up with nothing.”
The Flyers are 7-2-3 in their last 12 games. … Travis Konecny, who had five shot attempts (two on goal), is goal-less in his last 12 games. … Olle Lycksell was called up from the Phantoms, but didn’t make it in time for the game, so the Flyers played 11 forwards and seven on defense. … Lycksell will be in against Seattle Sunday afternoon at 1 PM. The Flyers had 30 blocked shots, led by Nick Seeler’s seven. … For the second time this season, Kieffer Bellows cleared waivers.