Five minutes in, and you could’ve heard a mouse fart in the Garden. There were a couple good rises in cheer for rushes by Boston’s top line and for Sean Kuraly’s stickhandling session into the slot; otherwise, not much emotion in the building. The organist picked things up at the first faceoff stoppage just before the quarter pole of the first frame.
You would be forgiven if you weren’t convinced that this was not a matinee game after all.
It took the fans in the Garden a good half-period to really get involved in the game. Only when Zdeno Chara’s Bruins’ Beat, Smells Like Teen Spirit, came on the radio did anyone stand up out of their seats.
Though Philadelphia put up a serious shot lead, goalie Jaroslav Halak wasn’t formidably tested; a loose puck around the midpoint was a little scary, and later in the period he managed to spot a screened point shot through the mess, and neatly into his glove.
On a defensive slip, Philly had themselves a clear 3-on-1 break, and Travis Konecny got his stick on the rebound to pop it over a sprawled Jaroslav Halak.
The Flyers crash the net and Konecny buries it! pic.twitter.com/gf2sCTpNBT— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) November 11, 2019
A couple minutes later, and a similar layer breakdown gave Philippe Myers time and space to wind up for his third goal of the season.
Great puck movement by Couturier & Konecny to start the play. TK with the awesome feed and Myers just rips it home, wow. pic.twitter.com/Rb1DLmJVXy— Brandon Murphy (@2Murphy8) November 11, 2019
Well, the first minute wasn’t very exciting. As the pace intensified - hopefully due to Bruce hammering his players for a weak first period - things got interesting. Zach Senyshyn thought he scored on a loose puck, but it ended up under Carter Hart’s toe and then was pushed into the net by his teammate... AFTER a whistle. No score for Boston.
Stretch passes from Chara began immediately thereafter, and he almost found Anders Bjork in the neutral zone. Philly continued to take better advantage of turnovers, and if not for a fortunate icing by the Flyers, Boston might have made their own exhausted effort to clear the puck.
For a stretch, it looked better for Boston; winning 1-on-1 puck battles and generally forcing Philly to play in their own zone. Even through a Pastrnak penalty, Boston looked like the team we might’ve seen in the first or third periods of games from about a week ago. No dice: Boston couldn’t get through Hart over two periods of play.
The third started off strong enough; a little more confidence from Boston bled through from the control they were able to show in the second.
Just over a quarter of the way through, Danton Heinen planted himself in front of Carter Hart and didn’t relinquish the space. A point shot from Charlie Coyle settled in the slot, and Heinen wheeled it to his forehand and shoveled it past Hart to put Boston on the board.
Then, with less than half the period to go, Marchand found some space to stickhandle towards the middle of the ice from the low circle, and hit his spot once again. LOVES going cross-cookies.
Pastrnak was obviously interfered with on a breakaway, and was given a penalty shot - here’s the sequence:
NO DICE. Damn, Pasta, is there such a thing as too many carbs? Because if so, I DON’T WANT TO KNOW.
Can anybody say extra hockey?
No goals. Penalty on Boston for having too many men on the ice with 20 seconds to go.
Joel Larabee scored in the first round, and Coyle, Marchand and Pastrnak couldn’t get one of their own.
And there was no rejoicing. Three straight losses for Boston, with a duel against the Florida Panthers coming up on Tuesday.