WASHINGTON – In overtime, the Flyers’ Big Three of Claude Giroux, Jake Voracek and Shayne Gostisbehere are supposed to strike fear in the hearts of NHL opponents.
Don’t look now, but Philadelphia’s “secret weapon’’ trio of Travis Konecny, Sean Couturier and Ivan Provorov might be Philadelphia’s real post-regulation time threat.
For the second time in three games, the “KCP’’ unit did the damage on Sunday, with Konecny scoring just 27 seconds into overtime to defeat the Washington Capitals, 2-1, at Capital One Arena.
Naturally, Couturier and Provorov picked up the assists.
These three players seem to know where each other is all the time and that’s perhaps the most important element of playing in OT.
And the Flyers certainly can certainly use that sort of help. Even with the two OT wins, they’re still just 4-8 in tiebreaking play.
“Just a real good effort by all three of them,’’ coach Dave Hakstol said. “I thought a real good individual effort by TK to play through the battle on the wall and get the puck at the start of that play.’’
Couturier sort of serves as a coach for Konecny, telling him when he can take chances and when he has to backcheck the other way.
“It’s all about starting with the puck and trying to control it and we did a good job hanging on to it,’’ Couturier said.
As for coaching, Couturier smiled.
“It’s man on man, always try to be on the ‘D’ side,’’ Couturier explained. “Let them skate if they want outside. We’ll wait for our chances and not cheat. Just little things and reminders. He’s been real good.’’
Konecny started the season with just 10 points in his first 36 games.
Now he’s posted 10 more in just his last 11 games.
This overtime arrangement looks pretty good because Konecny is an offensive player and he’s got two defense-minded partners in Provorov and Couturier.
“I know that those two are definitely on the defensive side of things,’’ said Konecny, who notched his first career OT winner. “And ‘Coots’ makes sure every time that I know that.
“He’s given me a little heads-up on staying below my guy in the defensive zone. Provy made a nice heads-up play there. And it worked out. Coots is teaching me a lot. When to take off, when to take advantage of space. And then capitalize on it.’’
Konecny is a plus-4 since joining Couturier and Claude Giroux on the top line in even-strength play.