Thursday, June 13 2024

‘We sucked’ — Flyers suffer ugly home loss to Blackhawks at bad time originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Considering the circumstances, this was a brutal loss for the Flyers.

They stumbled to the Blackhawks, 5-1, Saturday night at the Wells Fargo Center.

Chicago owns 52 losses and is now 7-29-1 on the road.

The Flyers trailed for all but two-plus minutes of the game.

Tyson Foerster scored the lone goal for the Flyers (36-29-10). It was the rookie winger’s 20th of the season.

John Tortorella’s club has lost four games in a row (0-3-1). The Flyers are two games into a stretch of six straight against teams not in playoff position. So far, they’re 0-2-0 and have been outscored 9-2.

“We’ve just got to get some sort of energy back and some confidence back in our game,” Tortorella said. “And not lose our belief. We’ve worked too hard to get to this spot, to play these type of games. Now we’ve got to figure it out, we’ve got to figure out how we get back on the other side of it here.”

After winning four straight out of the bye week and All-Star break, the Flyers have gone 7-10-4.

“I just think for some reason, when we’re playing top teams, we show up,” Travis Sanheim said. “When we play teams that aren’t in the playoff mix, we seem to play down to their level. It’s something that we’ve got to get better at, these are important points right now. At the end of the day, we’ve got to find a way to get a win, it doesn’t matter how we do it.”

The Flyers went 1-1-0 against the Blackhawks (22-47-5) in their two-game regular-season series.

Chicago got third-period goals from Joey Anderson and MacKenzie Entwistle to put the Flyers away for good.

“That’s a good, old-fashioned drubbing right there,” Tortorella said.

• The Flyers fell out of third place, a spot they had held since Jan. 24.

Via the tiebreaker of fewer games played, the Capitals jumped the Flyers in the Metropolitan Division race. Both clubs have 82 points, but Washington has two games in hand. The Flyers host the Capitals on April 16 in the regular-season finale for each team.

“We’ve responded well through adversity,” Sean Couturier said. “These last two games were kind of wasted opportunities, but one thing that I know about this group is we’re going to keep fighting until the end. We’ll give ourselves a chance to keep playing into the spring here.”

The Flyers dropped into the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card spot. They’re two points up on the Red Wings in that race.

Tortorella’s club went into Saturday with a 68.1 percent chance to make the postseason, according to Hockey-Reference.com’s probabilities report. It has seven games remaining.

• For the third time in the last four games, the Flyers fell behind 2-0.

Lukas Reichel batted home his own rebound off a wraparound attempt to hand the Flyers a 1-0 deficit just 2:01 minutes into the game.

With three minutes left in the first period, the Flyers gave up a 3-on-2 rush to Chicago and Philipp Kurashev beat Samuel Ersson with a good shot.

The 24-year-old rookie finished with 19 saves on 24 shots.

Foerster pulled the Flyers within 2-1 only 17 seconds into the second period. But as the Flyers threatened, they missed on opportunities to tie it. Travis Konecny rung the post 10 seconds after Foerster’s goal and the Flyers came up empty on two power plays. Their man advantage finished 0 for 3.

“I thought we started off a bit slow there,” Foerster said. “At this time of year, we’ve just got to play better.”

With under three and a half minutes to go in the middle stanza, Scott Laughton was whistled for a tripping penalty. The Blackhawks took advantage with a power play goal from Nick Foligno, putting the Flyers back down two at second intermission.

“We’re not executing,” Tortorella said of his team’s offensive struggles the last two games. “I try to be honest with you about the game itself that we play. I don’t think we’ve played poorly up until tonight. We sucked tonight. We didn’t execute, we didn’t make one play.

“Maybe that’s what needs to happen. I think we hit the bottom tonight here and maybe it needs to happen for us to get back into it. … We’re going to clear the deck, we’ve got to start again Monday and hopefully we’ll be able to rebound.”

Backing up Ersson, Ivan Fedotov donned the Flyers’ jersey and took the Wells Fargo Center ice for the first time.

He acknowledged the crowd in warmups and embraced his teammates at morning skate.

After a long and difficult journey, the 27-year-old Russian goalie finally joined the Flyers on Friday.

Chicago netminder Arvid Soderblom stopped 30 of the Flyers’ 31 shots. The 24-year-old came in 4-20-1 with a 4.02 goals-against average and an .876 save percentage.

• The Flyers got an important piece back in Nick Seeler.

The 30-year-old defenseman missed 11 games with an injury to the area of his left ankle and foot. Over those 11 games, the Flyers surrendered 4.00 goals per game and 10 power play goals.

Seeler was placed on injured reserve the same day Sean Walker was traded, wiping out the Flyers’ second defensive pair in early March.

“I don’t think there was a first or second pair, especially when we saw the marriage between Walks and Seels, how that worked,” Tortorella said Saturday at morning skate. “They played some big minutes as a first pair would.”

Jamie Drysdale has continued his on-ice rehab from an upper-body injury, presumably to the area of his left shoulder and arm.

The 21-year-old defenseman went through some contact drills Friday in a workout and was a participant at morning skate Saturday.

He has been out for a little under five weeks.

• The Flyers host the Islanders on Monday (7 p.m. ET/NBCSP). They then have three days before their next game and 11 before their next home game.

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Source: Yahoo Sports

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