Simmonds, Mason guide Flyers past Panthers
SUNRISE, FLA. >> Steven Mason made 38 saves and Wayne Simmonds had a goal and an assist, helping the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Florida Panthers 3-1 on Tuesday night.
Nick Cousins and Dale Weise also scored for the Flyers, and rookie Travis Konecny and Brayden Schenn had assists.
Reilly Smith scored for the Panthers, who got 25 stops from Roberto Luongo.
The loss spoiled the return of Florida forward Nick Bjugstad, who had missed all of this season after an injury in the preseason. The 24-year-old Bjugstad returned following a 19-game absence after breaking a bone in his hand in Dallas just before the season began.
Simmonds grabbed a loose puck in the first period following a faceoff in Philadelphia’s defensive zone, beating defenseman Yandle for possession.
Simmonds raced in on a 2-on-1, kept the puck and sniped a shot over Luongo for a 1-0 lead and his tenth goal at 11:11.
Weise added his first goal this season, a power-play tally, at 13:03 of the second. Konecy collected the puck and fired a shot from the left circle on Luongo and the rebound was backhanded into the open net by Weise to finish off the 2-on-1 break for a 2-0 lead.
Simmonds helped increase the lead in the third period when he slid a pass over to Cousins, who beat Luongo for another power-play goal and his third this season at 7:04.
Smith broke up Mason’s shutout bid when he deflected in Marchessault’s shot at 18:09 for his fourth goal.
Bjugstad, who has played center throughout his career, played right wing instead in his return.
Philadelphia forward Sean Couturier left the ice at 1:40 of the second period after getting tangled with Vincent Trocheck and falling to the ice. Couturier was helped off the ice by a member of the training staff and teammate Claude Giroux. He didn’t return.
NOTES: The game was the first of the Flyers’ two-game Florida swing. Philadelphia entered the game 2-3-0 in the first game and 4-0-1 in the second of back-to-backs . ... The Flyers scratched LW Roman Lyubimov and defensemen Michael Del Zotto and Nick Schultz. .. Panthers D Keith Yandle played in his 571st consecutive regular season game, pushing him past Mark Recchi into 11th on the NHL’s iron man list . ... D Alex Petrovic (broken ankle) is expected to miss two months after blocking a shot on Thursday in the Panthers’ 6-1 loss to Toronto . ... Florida scratched D Dylan McIlrath, C Seth Griffith and LW Shawn Thornton.
Wayne Simmonds’ shot gets past Florida Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo for a first-period goal in the Flyers’ 3-1 win Tuesday.
Flyers goalie Steve Mason makes a save during the third period against the Florida Panthers on Tuesday.