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Devils Overcome Slow Start to Defeat Flyers 3-2

The Devils had 2 of the worst periods they’ve played all season in a row, but managed to keep the game tied heading into the 3rd, where they scored 2 goals to get a 3-1 lead and eventually a 3-2 victory

NHL: DEC 03 Devils at Flyers
Jack Hughes scored the game-winning goal in the win
Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

It’s the first reverse retro game of the season, with the Devils wearing the old Scouts/Rockies colors for an away game against the rival Flyers.

1st Period

Hamilton had the second Devils shot of the game and he fell down and slid right into Carter Hart, pushing him out of the crease. Laughton was hooked by Haula to draw the first penalty of the game. Kevin Hayes ripped a shot off the far post and out from the right circle, a lucky break for the Devils. With 6:30 left Frost had a chance coming down the left side but he was out wide and the shot missed the net. Ristolainen took a tripping penalty, giving the Devils their first power play of the game with 4:18 left. The power play wasn’t terrible but it didn’t generate a shot. The Flyers had a 2 on 1 with Ristolainen coming out of the box but Hayes fired the shot wide.

2nd Period

The Flyers first line had the first good cycle shift of the period but did not score. Kevin Hayes had a good scoring chance splitting the defense but Schmid got a piece of it with the glove. Schmid made two saves in a row on DeAngelo. The Devils dumped the puck in the Flyers zone. McLeod forced a turnover behind the net. Wood centered from behind the goal to Zetterlund who buried the Devils first shot in 16:20 to give them a 1-0 lead. A moment after the faceoff, Smith took a penalty for holding Deslauriers. On the power play, Hayes at the dot sent it to Cates next to the net, who one-touched it to Konecny in the slot to tie the game. At this point, shots were 17-5 Flyers. Off the faceoff the Devils had a chance with Bratt shooting from a good spot, but Hart stopped him. At the other end of the ice Siegenthaler lost his stick. Using Wood’s he managed to clear the puck to get a new one. Holtz then took a penalty for slashing. On the power play Hayes centered for MacEwan who got free of the defense and but couldn’t coral it, and Siegenthaler ended up clearing the puck. The Devils drew a penalty as Hischier got high-sticked by Braun. They had a couple shots onthe delayed penalty but the Flyers touched up. The best shot on the power play was a Dougie Hamilton blast from the point that went off the inside of the far post and out. It seemed like the Devils might get some momentum off the power play but instead the Flyers had a good shift in the Devils zone. Finally Wood got the puck out and the Flyers iced it.

3rd Period

The Devils would regain the lead. Carter Hart turned the puck over to Wood behind the net and he passed it to Mercer who wrapped it around and in. The Devils have been better to start the 3rd. Bratt’s line had a good shift in the offensive zone. The Hischier line followed it up with another offensive zone shift. The Hughes line had another OZ shift. Hughes made Provorov fall down, danced between 2 other Flyers, and backhanded the puck on net. Hart made the first save but Hughes poked the rebound in to make it 3-1 Devils. Hischier made a move on DeAngelo and flipped a backhander high. DeAngelo decided to knock Hischier to the ice from behind in response. Deslauriers knocked Haula’s stick out of his hands on the next shift. No penalty on either play. With 9:26 left in regulation Zetterlund drew a hooking penalty gaining the blue line. Laughton had a quick shorthanded snapshot and Schmid made a blocker save. With about 6:40 left in the period, Spaulding noted that it was the first time he’d seen Boqvist in the 3rd period and he’d yet to see Holtz in the 3rd period. He clarified a moment later that that 4th line had no shifts in the 3rd, and the only ice time for any of the players on it was that one shift for Boqvist. The Flyers had a shift in the Devils zone. Siegenthaler broke his stick and for the second time tonight, Wood gave him his. Short change this period, so Wood went to the bench for a new one, but as he was coming back into the play, Lucas Sedlak, the open man, got the puck and took a slapshot that beat Schmid with MacEwen screening. 3-2 Devils. On the next shift the Devils iced the puck for a defense zone faceoff. The Flyers won the draw. A shot off the faceoff bounced to Farabee who buried it, but right before he did, Frost ran into Schmid. Incidental contact, no goal. In the last couple minutes they Flyers tried everything they could. Mercer iced the puck going for the empty net. Schmid made a couple saves and the Devils had several blocks. Schmid tried to score an ENG but the puck bounced off someone. The Devils managed to get it to the corner in the dying seconds and Hughes flipped the puck out, sealing the 3-2 victory.

Final Thoughts

There was a good response from the Devils in the 3rd and a good game from Schmid, but the first two periods were quite awful. The Devils were being outshot 24-12 after the first two periods. They got lucky and Schmid made the saves he needed to and the game was tied at 1 after 2. The 3rd period was better with 2 goals not long into the period. They almost gave up 2 goals in short order, but the second was was waved off for GI, fortunately. The goals for the next game should be a much better start and to try to play better defensively late in the 3rd than they did today or against the Predators. They Devils were outshot by almost a 2:1 margin, 33 to 18. It’s great that they’ve been getting wins in games where they didn’t have their A game. They haven’t been as dominant lately, but a stretch of poorer games is pretty much inevitable in an 82 game season. They’re still winning, and good teams often find a way to win without their A game. The Devils are a good team.

Beating a rival feel good? Anything stand out to you in the game? Leave your thoughts in the comments below, and thank you for reading.