MARCH 19, 2017:
HURRICANES VS. FLYERS
The Flyers and Hurricanes went into this late-season matchup desperately needing a win. Tied at 72 points, both teams were seven back of the Maple Leafs for the final playoff spot and needed to all but run the table to have a shot at the post-season.
It turned out to be a good game, with the Flyers taking a 2-0 lead early in the second period before the Hurricanes pushed back to tie it. It stayed that way until a Jordan Staal goal midway through the third gave Carolina a 3-2 lead and a shot at a crucial road win.
But with the goalie pulled in the final minute, the Flyers tied it up on a fluke. Travis Konecny’s attempt at a centering pass got caught in the feet of Hurricanes defenseman Brett Pesce, who accidentally kicked it into his own net. That sent the game to overtime, where Brayden Schenn won it for Philadelphia less than 40 seconds in.
At the time, the loss seemed like one more blow to the Hurricanes’ fading playoff hopes. But it ended up being something more. If Carolina avoids Pesce’s accidental own-goal and holds on for a regulation win, it finishes the year with 88 points, passing the Flyers for 19th spot. That would’ve made it a Hurricanes logo that Bill Daly flipped over for the second overall pick, the first lottery win in Carolina franchise history.