Flyers’ inspired rally leads to second straight win

Scott Laughton

PHILADELPHIA – Unlike last season, these Flyers don’t give up when adversity hits.

Playing with an injury-depleted lineup and down 2-0 after the first period, the Flyers came roaring back to tie the score in the second period, then got a game-winner from Travis Konecny with 6:07 to play for a 3-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday afternoon at the Wells Fargo Center.

That gives the Flyers a 2-0 record and provides some confidence heading into an upcoming three-game road trip.

The second period rally featured a power-play goal from Tony DeAngelo and a shorthanded effort from Scott Laughton.

DeAngelo connected for his first goal as a Flyer at 10:32. With Konecny setting a screen in front of Canucks goalie Thatcher Demko, DeAngelo fired home a shot from the point.

Laughton pulled the Flyers even at 17:49. Konecny spotted Laughton breaking alone up the middle and banked a perfect carom lead pass through the neutral zone. Laughton took the puck in full stride and beat Demko for the tying goal.

Konecny took advantage of a Vancouver to score the winning goal. The Flyers had to survive a six-on-four situation for the final 1:58 due to a penalty to Laughton.

Although the Flyers outshot the Canucks by a 14-4 margin in the first period, the visitors took advantage of a couple offensive opportunities to get the early edge.

Goaltender Carter Hart was a bit slow to react on the first one as he was beaten on a shot from the top of the right circle by Kyle Burroughs at 1:34.

On just Vancouver’s third shot of the game, the lead increased to two goals. Conor Garland’s hard wrist shot from the right dot  sailed past Hart and inside the far post at 14:12.

Coach John Tortorella addressed his team after the first period and assured it that even though the scoreboard looked unfavorable, the best course of action was to stick to the system and good things would come about.

“I’m glad the team went through it so early in the year,’’ Tortorella said. “I just wanted them to make sure, because sometimes you get so locked on that scoreboard. . .a big part of my job is determining how we’re playing. That’s a big part of a coach’s responsibility.

“I just wanted to let them know right away. Stay patient, grind away. I do think to go through that in the second game of the season and succeed will help when we go through that situation again.’’

Kevin Hayes took responsibility for the Canucks’ second goal, admitting his turnover contributed to the deficit. Otherwise, he played well and played a part in keeping Vancouver off the board over the final 40 minutes.

“I thought we were playing really well,’’ he said. “We didn’t change the way we wanted to play. We really didn’t stray from our game plan.’’

Added Konecny: “Torts just came in and said listen, it’s just a little bit of a shock how we’re playing. We deserve better. We should be in it. When you hear that, you go out and keep doing the same things. Put our heads down, keep working and you’re going to wear the other team down.’’

In other words, no crisis of confidence like the 2021-22 season when even a one-goal deficit sometimes seemed insurmountable.

“That’s what they (the coaching staff) have been preaching all training camp, it’s going to be hard,’’ Konecny said. “Keep up the tempo, it’s a hard way to play but everyone has to buy in. You’re going to get rewarded, it’s going to keep you in games.’’

>Lycksell makes debut

With right wing Owen Tippett placed on IR Saturday, the Flyers recalled rookie forward Olle Lycksell from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

Lycksell, who began training camp in energetic fashion but tailed off near the end, played in his first NHL game against the Canucks.

During a pre-game press briefing, coach John Tortorella said Lycksell, 23, was impressive in the early stages of the preseason. He looked particularly effective in a rookie game win over the New York Rangers at the PPL Center in Allentown.

“He was around the net, he was always around the puck,’’ Tortorella said. “I just noticed him but he kind of fell down from there. I just liked his energy.’’

The 5-foot-10, 163-pound Lycksell is a native of Oskarshamn, Sweden. He was selected in the sixth round (168th overall) of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

Tortorella said he had no update on the status of Tippett, who suffered an upper-body injury during the Flyers’ 5-2 season-opening win over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night.

>Short shots

In addition to Tippett, Cam Atkinson and Rasmus Ristolainen were scratched and are listed as day-to-day. . .The Flyers resume action on Tuesday when they visit the Tampa Bay Lightning. . .Flyers’ Nic Deslauriers got the best of Burroughs in a third period scrap.


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About Wayne Fish 2446 Articles
Wayne Fish has been covering the Flyers since 1976, a stint which includes 18 Stanley Cup Finals, four Winter Olympics and numerous other international events.