Mistakes cost Flyers in Carolina, fall 2-1

Image courtesy of Grant Halverson/Getty Images

For the second time in two days, the Philadelphia Flyers were outworked by the opposition, as the Carolina Hurricanes grabbed a 2-1 victory at home. It was a Radek Dvorak goal in the second period that proved to be a game-winner, as Jay Harrison also scored for the hosts. Luke Schenn was the only member of Philly to beat Anton Khudobin on the evening, as the former Boston Bruin stopped 17 of the Flyers’ 18 shots.

Through three games, the Flyers have a total of three goals, one of which has come at even strength. “I don’t know if anything’s missing,” said Schenn following the loss. “We’re just having a tough time scoring goals. No one’s got that confidence or that swagger right now to score some goals. When you put the puck in the net, it makes everyone feel good around you. For whatever reason, we’ve had a hard time doing that.”

The older Schenn had evened the score minutes before a turnover behind Steve Mason’s net led to Dvorak’s game-winning tally. After a clean exchange between Mason and the former Toronto Maple Leaf, Schenn tried to clear the puck up the middle of the ice. Unfortunately, the disc redirected off of Jeff Skinner’s skate and landed right to Dvorak, who proceeded to beat Mason glove side for his second goal of 8:20 into the second period.

From that point on, the Flyers didn’t have much of a chance to win, as they failed to score for the remainder of the second period and posted all of three shots in the final stanza. The lack of effort shown between this game and yesterday’s game paired with Philly’s inability to score over the first three games doesn’t bode well for a season that is all of three games old.

It’s scary to think of where this team would be if it wasn’t for the new additions of Vincent Lecavalier, Mark Streit, and Ray Emery. Lecavalier has a goal and an assist, while Streit has two assists on a team that has three goals. If Emery didn’t bail out his defense on several scoring chances yesterday, the 4-1 loss would have been even more lopsided. What makes it even more painful is the fact Kris Newbury recorded an assist on Schenn’s goal, another individual who shouldn’t have more points than Claude Giroux, Scott Hartnell, Jakub Voracek, Wayne Simmonds, and Matt Read.

Things could get even worse for the Flyers if they don’t pull out a win on Tuesday against the Florida Panthers at the Wells Fargo Center. A loss to Florida on Tuesday could mean Philly might start off the season 0-6-0, as they take on the Phoenix Coyotes and the Detroit Red Wings in the following games. A 1-5-0 or worse start isn’t a good thing for Peter Laviolette.

“I would think that the guys are probably pretty frustrated,” Laviolette said about his team following the defeat. “There’s not a lot of room out there. The first game, we had a lot of attempts; the second game, not a lot of attempts. We’re in there, we’re looking, but we’re not coming up with anything.”

As for tonight’s game, the scoring opened just over eight minutes into the affair. After the Hurricanes cycled strongly in the Flyers’ zone for the first segment of the game, it finally resulted in a lead, as a Harrison shot from the point dribbled through Mason’s five-hole and over the goal line for the blue liner’s first of the season. It was a very soft goal, but the Orange and Black needed to do a better job getting the puck out of their zone.

Despite being outshot 17-5 in the first 20 minutes, the Flyers entered the second period down by just one goal. The visitors tied the game 3:01 into the middle period with a tally from Schenn.

After Newbury won a face-off back to Schenn, the defenseman worked his way into the circle to Khudobin’s right before he found the back of the cage through traffic to make it 1-1.

Dvorak’s tally came shortly afterwards and the rest is history.

The Orange and Black return to Philly and will host the Panthers on Tuesday, as they look to gain their first point of the year.

Notes: The Flyers snapped their three-game winning streak against the Hurricanes and their three-game winning streak in Carolina with tonight’s loss…Tonight was the first time the Flyers posted 18 shots or less since their 2-1 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on November 9th, 2011…The Flyers’ power play was 0-for-2 tonight and dropped to 2-for-14 on the year…Adam Hall was plus-1 with two shots on net, and a hit in 9:25 TOI…Hal Gill, Erik Gustafsson, and Jay Rosehill were scratched for the Flyers. Tim Gleason, Kevin Westgarth, and Mike Komisarek were scratched for Carolina…Ryan Murphy recorded his first NHL point with the primary assist on Harrison’s goal…The Flyers dropped to 0-1-0 against the Metropolitan Division and 0-3-0 against the Eastern Conference this season…The Flyers were 0-3-0 after three games last season.