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Deslauriers’ Game-Tying Shorthanded Goal, Cates’ Game-Winning Goal, Hart’s 24 Saves Keys to 3-1 Victory

(Heather Barry Images, LLC)

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Detroit Red Wings, 3-1, snapping their 4-game losing streak and extending Detroit’s winless streak to 6 games.

Carter Hart made 24 saves, including 22 straight to end the game after David Perron and the Red Wings jumped to an early 1-0 lead. Nicolas Deslauriers then tied the game with a shorthanded tally which was then followed up by Noah Cates’ eventual game-winning goal. Scott Laughton iced the game with an empty-netter in his 500th career game as the Flyers came through tonight with a team effort.

They outshot Detroit 37-25, including 23-15 in the final 40 minutes where Detroit was held without a shot for over 15 minutes in between the second and third periods. Rasmus Ristolainen and Brendan Lemieux – who also had 5 hits in 14:24 of ice time in his Flyers debut – were +3 on the night, Laughton fired 6 shots on goal, Wade Allison had 7 hits, and Joel Farabee came within inches of breaking his goalless drought – which now stands at 22 games – several times but lady luck was just no on his side tonight.

The Philadelphia Flyers’ schedule has been so sporadic lately that you forget the season isn’t actually over yet. Add in the fact that they’ve lost 12 of their last 15 games, botched the trade deadline, and have played one game this week, you need constant reminders that there was still 20 games left in the season coming into tonight. Tonight we started the countdown as the Detroit Red Wings entered the empty confines of the Wells Fargo Center, having also been the only team that had any kind of offer on the table for James van Riemsdyk. So rather than having 2 empty roster spots with the departure of van Riemsdyk and Justin Braun at the deadline, the Flyers pulled out all the stops yet again with the 11/7 formation.

Newcomer Brendan Lemieux was plugged in on a line with Noah Cates and Scott Laughton, the trio of Joel Farabee, Morgan Frost, and Owen Tippett remained intact, the previously rejected van Riemsdyk and Kevin Hayes were on a line with Wade Allison, leaving Nicolas Deslauriers and Tanner Laczynski – making his season debut tonight – as the spare forwards. The defense pairings remained the same with Braun being the extra defenseman. Carter Hart returned between the pipes, looking for his second victory against the Red Wings after his 30 save performance in their nail-biting victory on the 21st of January. Scott Laughton was also suiting up for the 500th time in his NHL career – all with the Orange and Black.

As for the Red Wings, they came into tonight’s game on a 5-game losing streak, lost a lot of ground in the Wild Card race before the trade deadline thanks in large part to 2 losses to Ottawa in consecutive attempts, and decided to trade several players at the deadline while acknowledging that this wasn’t their season. They traded Tyler Bertuzzi to Boston, Oskar Sundqvist to Minnesota, Filip Hronek to Vancouver, and Jakub Vrana to St. Louis, but they did manage to extend Flyer-target, Dylan Larkin, to an 8-year extension. Ville Husso got his second start of the season versus the Flyers, looking for his 24th victory of the season and first in 4 attempts since the 23rd of February.


4:51 into the game, David Perron finished off a pitch and catch between he and Andrew Copp with a one-timed wrist shot in the slot past Carter Hart for his 16th of the season. The goal started with a turnover by Morgan Frost near the blue-line in the Red Wings zone as he tried a pass to Joel Farabee, Copp was tabbed with the takeaway and skated off on the wing before dropping a pass to Perron, who was waiting near the boards outside of the blue-line. Tony DeAngelo was caught flat-footed in the middle of both players, backed away from Perron just far enough for him to zero in on a target and fired it past Hart.

The Flyers had several dangerous chances after Perron’s goal that included an abbreviated breakaway for Tanner Laczynski that was stopped by the pad, Joel Farabee being absolutely robbed by Husso in his bid for his first goal in 22 games, then Wade Allison had a slot-chance that went just wide of the glove, and then the veterans in Kevin Hayes, James van Riemsdyk, and Scott Laughton each had a crack on Husso as the Flyers were circling and cycling around the Wings in their offensive zone.

Farabee’s chance was the best of the period up until that point where he corralled the rebound, but Husso was in perfect position to slide over and stop Farabee and he tried to jam it home – had he elevated the shot, it surely would’ve been a tie game and the monkey being off his back as he hasn’t scored in 21 games dating back to January 9th against Buffalo. Farabee was then set up brilliantly by Tippett as he found himself all alone on Husso but the goaltender shut the door as he tried sliding it through the five hole but missed his spot.

With 7:04 remaining, the Flyers were awarded with the first power play of the game after Dominik Kubalik was whistled down for an offensive zone tripping minor, sending the worst-ranked power play to the ice against the 19th-ranked penalty killing unit. The Flyers, who were 3 for 28 in their previous 14 games with the extra man, started off this power play with a little bit of pressure, zipping passes around, and looking for deft deflections but the Wings defended it perfectly as they weren’t able to trouble Husso all that much with their first power play. Shortly after the expiration of the penalty, Joe Veleno was sprung on a breakaway with Laczynski on his tail, fortunately Carter Hart shut the door as he kept the deficit at 1.

The first period ended with the Flyers trailing 1-0, up in the shot clock with a 13-10 edge and a 34-19 shot attempt advantage, and didn’t look all that bad as they created several dangerous chances but their inability to finish – especially Joel Farabee – continued to haunt them.


5:10 into the second period, Nick Seeler was called for a hooking minor, sending the 22nd-ranked power play to the ice against to the ice for the first time tonight. With 17 seconds left on the power play, Nicolas Deslauriers found himself on a shorthanded breakaway and ripped a shot past Husso for the Flyers’ 11th shorthanded tally of the season and his 5th goal on the year.

The play started with Brendan Lemieux generating a takeaway along the boards and as he tried to get the puck out of the zone to Deslauriers and it was stopped at the blue-line by Jake Walman, but his spin-around pass attempt to the opposite side was read by Deslauriers, who sped down the ice and wired the shot to tie the game at the 6:53 mark of the second period.

The Flyers then took the lead with 7:03 left in the period thanks to a Noah Cates deflection right in front of Ville Husso. The play started with Brendan Lemieux – again – who scooped up the loose puck in the neutral zone and entered the offensive zone with speed by firing a seemingly harmless shot towards the net. The Flyers kept the puck in the zone, cycled around a little, before Nick Seeler’s point shot with traffic in front of the net was deflected by the rookie for his 10th of the season. Rasmus Ristolainen picked up the secondary assist as well.

The second period came to a close with the Flyers taking a 2-1 lead from goals by Deslauriers and Cates, led in shots again with a 9-5 advantage and 23-15 after 40, 52-29 edge in shot attempts, a 14-8 scoring chances advantage, and the Wings were held without a shot in the final 8.5 minutes of the period.


With 14:20 remaining in the final period of regulation, Joel Farabee was called for a tripping minor as the Wings were still looking for their first shot in close to 14 minutes. Dylan Larkin finally delivered a shot on goal with 13:48 remaining as Carter Hart gloved it down with relative ease for his 15th save of the game and only 6th since the end of the first period.

Hart faced a few more chances but the Flyers killed off their second successive penalty, keeping the lead intact heading into the midway point of the third.

With 9:51 left, David Perron was called for a hooking minor, sending the Flyers on their second power play of the game. The Flyers had one good scoring opportunity at the beginning but once again faltered to another no-show with the extra man – 3 for their last 30.

29 seconds after the Perron penalty expired, Moritz Seider was whistled down for a high-sticking minor, showing off his frustrations with the Flyers having been all over him this game, primarily Brendan Lemieux. The Flyers’ best chance came from none other than Joel Farabee who got robbed – again – in the slot by the glove of Husso.

James van Riemsdyk was dumped in front of the goaltender as he covered up for the whistle which led to even more pushing and shoving, all of which really escalated from the second period when Farabee and Perron exchanged words and then when Lemieux and Seider had their cross-checking match. Out of the scrum, Lucas Raymond and Scott Laughton were assessed coincidental minors for roughing. The Flyers failed to capitalize on their 3rd power play opportunity.

With 2:37 remaining, Laughton had a chance to make his mark in his 500th career game as he was jettisoned on a breakaway after Tippett started the play by getting the puck out of the zone on a self-bank pass and then Noah Cates set Laughton up from the neutral zone with a quick heads up pass. Pius Suter made contact with Laughton before he got the shot off but no penalty shot was called.

Ironically 49 seconds later, Laughton sealed the deal with an empty net goal after Moritz Seider’s stick blew up on a one-time attempt, which allowed Laughton to corral the puck and then made his way down the ice before depositing the puck into the empty net from the neutral zone.

Farabee came down the ice on the next shift on an odd-man rush with Tippett but his scoring chance went wide – keeping him off the scoresheet again albeit a strong game from the youngster.


The Flyers will embark on a three-game road trip beginning on Tuesday night (7:00pm ET, NBCSP+) when they visit the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena.

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