Huge come­back lifts Fly­ers over Red Wings

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Rob Par­ent rpar­ent@21st-cen­tu­ry­ @Reluc­tan­tSE on Twit­ter

Mark Streit and Jake Vo­racek scored big goals for the Fly­ers in a come-from-be­hind win over the Detroit Red Wings Wed­nes­day night.

PHILADEL­PHIA >> Once again Wed­nes­day night, the Fly­ers fell be­hind early.

Once again they fought back to tie.

Once again a de­fen­sive mis­take seemed to kill them, only this time they had another come­back in them.

With time tick­ing down and goalie Michal Neu­virth look­ing on from the bench, the Fly­ers used their ex­tra man to full man-ad­van­tage, with Mark Streit scor­ing a game-sav­ing goal with just 1:02 left in reg­u­la­tion time.

Then af­ter Detroit had con­trolled pos­ses­sion for a long spell at the start of over­time, an er­rant Wings pass sent Claude Giroux back lead­ing a 2-on-1 break. He slid a per­fect pass to Jake Vo­racek, who ri­fled a sharpan­gled one-timer home for a 4-3 over­time vic­tory at Wells Fargo Cen­ter.

It was a text­book 3-on-3 OT goal by the Fly­ers’ two best of­fen­sive play­ers. Took a while, though.

“It was a long shift,” Giroux said. “We got the 2 on 1 and ... I don’t know where Jake was go­ing. He was over in the cor­ner at one point. But he’s got a good shot so that was good.” It was fun. It was ex­cit­ing ... This stuff is get­ting old, no?

“Yeah,” Giroux ex­claimed. “It’s get­ting old. We need to just start get­ting the lead and keep­ing it. We have the abil­ity to do it. We have the po­ten­tial of be­ing a good team. I don’t know what we’re wait­ing for. But when our backs are against the wall, that’s when we start turn­ing it on. At least we know we can do it. We just have to do it for 60 min­utes.”

This lat­est in-game res­ur­rec­tion was forced by Radek Gu­das seem­ingly hit­ting a speed bump in the third pe­riod, los­ing the puck at his blue line. Just a blink later Detroit’s Justin Ab­delka­der passed it right through de­fense­man Bran­don Man­ning to age­less Hen­rik Zet­ter­berg, who promptly scored a goal for a 3-2 Red Wings lead.

Dy­lan Larkin and An­dreas Athana­siou also scored for the young (ex­cept Zet­ter­berg) Wings, those goals com­ing within 16 sec­onds of each other mid­way through the first pe­riod. It was the eighth time in the Fly­ers’ first 11 games that they would have to play from be­hind.

Maybe they’re get­ting good at it.

Rarely of­fen­sive Chris Van­deVelde, play­ing just one day af­ter his wife gave birth to a daugh­ter, went fly­ing (lit­er­ally) through the crease and man­aged to shovel a puck passed by Bray­den Schenn into the net be­fore he crash­landed next to Red Wings goalie Petr Mrazek at 13:39 of the sec­ond pe­riod.

“I think I threw the puck wide to Schenn. He skated it up and then pulled up and feath­ered a nice pass over to me and I was able to beat their goalie,” Van­deVelde tes­ti­fied. “It’s nice that it hap­pened af­ter my daugh­ter was born, so it is pretty ex­cit­ing.”

It would get a tad more ex­cit­ing.

Then Fly­ers kept com­ing, and fi­nally 3:51 into the third, an An­drew Mac­Don­ald slap­shot was bob­bled back into the slot, and new Flyer grinder Ro­man Lyu­bi­mov was there to re­bound it back into the net for his first NHL goal and a 2-2 tie.

But what this Fly­ers team has done in this young sea­son is be con­sis­tent with de­fen­sive mis­takes. Gu­das and Man­ning com­bined for another one that came very close to cost­ing the club another game.

Not this time, how­ever, as the Fly­ers showed that for ev­ery mis­take, a come­back is al­ways a pos­si­bil­ity. This was the sev­enth time they came back to at least tie a game in which they fell two or more goals be­hind early on.

“We’ve put our­selves in a hole here game af­ter game, so we have to fig­ure that out,” Van­deVelde said. “It shows some char­ac­ter that we come back and win, but you don’t want to keep re­peat­ing that game af­ter game.”


De­spite be­ing a big part of the vic­tory, Schenn found him­self tak­ing the stand in his own de­fense in the locker room af­ter the game.

Though he didn’t get pe­nal­ized, re­plays showed that he lev­eled Detroit de­fense­man Bren­dan Smith with a shoul­der check to the head late in the sec­ond pe­riod. Since Schenn had al­ready served a three-game sus­pen­sion this sea­son stem­ming from a hit on T.J. Oshie in Game 6 of the play­off loss to Wash­ing­ton last April, the pre­sump­tion is this one will war­rant a long look at the league dis­ci­plinar­ian of­fice.

“In the in­ter­mis­sion I watched it, and I 1,000 per­cent didn’t try to (hit) him. I know it looks that way. I was try­ing to get out of his way and avoid con­tact,” Schenn said. “I’m kind of watch­ing the puck (there). To be hon­est I didn’t even know ... I was try­ing to get out of his way and avoid con­tact. I wasn’t even try­ing to make body con­tact there. I talked to both of­fi­cials and they said the same thing ... and I went up and apol­o­gized to Smith.

“I’m not try­ing to go out there and pick any­one in the head, and es­pe­cially jump into it. I knew I did it but it was 100 per­cent an ac­ci­dent and I apol­o­gized.”


Jake Vo­racek, left, cel­e­brates his over­time goal with Claude Giroux, cen­ter, and Shayne Gostis­be­here af­ter the Fly­ers ral­lied to tie late in reg­u­la­tion and com­pleted the come­back Wed­nes­day night for a 4-3 vic­tory over Detroit.

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