Flyers Slash Through Sabres 4-1

Heading into the bye week with two consecutive wins, there would have been zero surprise had the Flyers overlooked the Buffalo Sabres especially after beating St Louis on Saturday. However, despite a slow start, the Flyers did flip the switch and beat the Sabres 4-1.

The first period was sloppy for both teams with the Sabres generating the better of the play outshooting the Flyers 12-5 in the first frame.

Ryan O’Reilly opened the scoring for Buffalo with a perfect shot over the shoulder of Michal Neuvirth for a powerplay goal. Andrew MacDonald was in the box for hooking at the time. Neuvirth was making his first start since before his injury in November as Brian Elliott had the day off.

The Flyers however had other plans, less than two minutes later, Shayne Gostisbehere would take a perfect slot pass from Scott Laughton and fired the puck past Robin Lehner to tie the game. Jori Lehtera drew the secondary helper.

Image Courtesy of Frank Fimmano Photography

Later in the second, the Sabres Scott Wilson took a holding penalty, and Sean Couturier made them regret it firing home a goal after taking a feed from Claude Giroux. Jake Voracek drew the other assist on the goal.

The Flyers took the lead into the third period and held it well. Third period shots were 8-6 in favor of Buffalo, and the Flyers didn’t hold their normal third period shell but tried to attack.

There was an injury scare in the third as well as a Robert Hagg slapshot felled fellow Swede, Robin Lehner when it caught him in the side of the head. After being examined by the trainer, Lehner stayed in the game and showed no ill effects.

Unlike Saturday, where the empty net situation turned comical with an inability to hit the empty cage, Sean Couturier scored quickly to increase the lead to 3-1.

Image Courtesy of Frank Fimmano Photography

The Sabres did not roll over after one empty net goal against. Pulling Lehner almost right away after the Couturier empty netter, the Flyers once again gained possession and tried to get their center his hat trick. However, the Sabres guarded him tightly and instead Wayne Simmonds found Ivan Provorov to hit the cage for his 8th goal of the season.

The Flyers hit the bye week with three straight wins. Today was Andrew MacDonald’s 500th career NHL game, he had one assist, his 4th of the season, on the Provorov goal.

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