Sunday, August 30, 2015

Shorthanded goal haunts Flyers again

ANAHEIM, Calif. - The Flyers cut the deficit to 3-2 early in the third period Thursday night and were in position to tie the game when Anaheim’s Hampus Lindholm went to the penalty box with 8 minutes, 34 seconds remaining.

Shorthanded goal haunts Flyers again

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The Flyers suffered their fifth loss in the last six games and fell out of a playoff spot. (AP)
The Flyers suffered their fifth loss in the last six games and fell out of a playoff spot. (AP)

ANAHEIM, Calif. - The Flyers cut the deficit to 3-2 early in the third period Thursday night and were in position to tie the game when Anaheim’s Hampus Lindholm went to the penalty box with 8 minutes, 34 seconds remaining.

And then…

The Ducks iced their eventual 5-3 win with a shorthanded goal, an all too-familiar sight for the Flyers this season.

Daniel Winnik’s tally was the ninth shorthanded goal allowed by the Flyers, tying them with Edmonton for the most in the league.

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Kimmo Timonen’s cross-ice pass was deflected by Saku Koivu, who started a two-on-on one with Winnik. Robbed by Steve Mason earlier in the period, Winnik lifted a shot into the net to give the Ducks a 4-2 cushion with 7:24 to go.

“With the setup some times, if you don’t execute, they’re going to get odd-man rushes at times,” coach Craig Berube said. “We’ve got to do a better job of executing.”

“I’ve made that pass 1,000 times,”  saidTimonen, who played with a bruised left foot. “He made a good read. That’s my bad.”

The Ducks later made it 5-2 with an empty-net goal.

The Flyers’ propensity to allow shorthanded goals seemed to baffle most of the players.

Except Timonen.

“Well, we’ve got one D (man) and four forwards. That’s probably one of the issues,” Timonen said.

That wasn’t the factor in Thursday’s shorthanded goal, but it has contributed to many of the others. The Flyers’ forwards have had problems at the point and aren’t used to getting back quickly on defense when there’s a busted play.

“But we also score a lot of goals (on the power play),” Timonen noted.

The Flyers began the night 14th out of 30 NHL teams with a 19.1 percent success rate on the power play.

Berube has a difficult call: Add another defenseman to cut down on shorthanded goals, or stay on the offensive.

“You could have a D-man and he still could get caught” if you don’t execute, Berube said.

Breakaways. The Flyers suffered their fifth loss in the last six games and fell out of a playoff spot ... Steve Downie collected his 100th career assist ... After missing 10 games with an ankle injury, Zac Rinaldo returned to the lineup and helped draw two first-period penalties on the Ducks. Rinaldo had three hits in 7:44 ... Believe it or not, Brayden Schenn when face his ex-Kings teammates Saturday afternoon for the first time since he was acquired from Los Angeles in 2011 ... Michael Raffl played center for the first time in his NHL career and scored a late goal and won two of five faceoffs.

Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter @BroadStBull.

 

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