Flyers outlast Bruins in nine-round shootout
PHILADELPHIA -- On a night Philadelphia relied heavily on its goaltender, second-year defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere netted the deciding goal in the ninth round of the shootout to give the Flyers a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins on Tuesday night.
Gostisbehere scored on Tuukka Rask on the second shootout attempt of his career and Flyers goalie Steve Mason stopped the Bruins’ final attempt by David Backes to give the Philadelphia its second straight victory.
“I really noticed his hands were low so I said I‘m going to go in there and just chip one high,” said Gostisbehere, who was stopped on his only shootout attempt last season as a rookie. “Thankfully, it worked out. He got a piece of it but it had enough to get in there.”
Mason stopped 45 shots, and another eight of nine in the shootout, to improve his record to 6-8-3.
“The type of performance Mase had tonight is something that injects a lot of confidence into the group,” Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said. “But you have to look at this realistically and say we’ve got to be a lot better. We simply didn’t have the energy through this entire hockey game. We never did. Mase battled real hard for us tonight and he’s the reason we got the two points.”
Defenseman Michael Del Zotto and center Claude Giroux scored in regulation for the Flyers (11-10-3), who won for the second straight time.
Forwards David Krejci and Brad Marchand netted goals for the Bruins (12-10-1), who fell for the fourth time in five games despite outshooting the Flyers 47-21. Tuukka Rask stopped 19 of 21 shots to fall to 12-4-1.
Each goalie made dazzling saves in the final minute of overtime, with Mason snaring a shot by David Krejci and Rask sliding to his right to stop a Claude Giroux one-timer.
Mason held the Bruins off the board on their first 33 shots but saw them reel off a pair of third-period goals 1:18 part to tie the score at 2.
Krejci spoiled Mason’s shutout bid 4:26 into the third period when he one-timed a pass from defenseman Torey Krug for his third goal of the season.
A tripping minor on Nick Cousins was negated by an embellishment penalty to David Pastrnak and with the two teams skating four players aside, Marchand found space in the crease, won a battle with Michael Del Zotto and put a rebound of a Krug point shot under Mason for his seventh goal of the season.
“We talked about it after the second period, to stay positive and keep shooting and pressuring the net and we’d get one or two and that’s exactly what happened,” said Pastrnak, who was stopped five times.
The Flyers had a chance to retake the lead at the 6:23 mark when forward Jakub Voracek was hooked from behind by Bruins defenseman Joe Morrow. Voracek was awarded a penalty shot, but Rask kicked away his shot to keep it knotted at 2.
The Flyers and Bruins failed to convert on late power plays in the third period, sending the game into overtime.
Claude Julien moved into second place on the Bruins’ all-time games coached list (727) but was without two of his most reliable defensemen, Zdeno Chara and John-Michael Liles. Their absences showed in the opening period when the Flyers took a 2-0 lead on goals by Del Zotto and Giroux 1:32 apart.
Del Zotto’s blast from the point sailed over the right shoulder of Rask with 6:04 remaining in the period, giving him his second goal of the season and his first since Nov. 12.
Bruins right winger Austin Czarnik took a slashing penalty four seconds after Del Zotto’s goal and the Flyers’ second-ranked power play connected. Giroux snapped a nine-game goalless drought when he one-timed a pass from Jakub Voracek past an outstretched Rask for his fifth goal of the season and fourth on the power play.
The Bruins spent much of that penalty kill without one of their sticks. Defenseman Brandon Carlo broke his and forward Riley Nash loaned him his, allowing the Flyers to freely move the puck around for Giroux’s scoring chance.
Boston outshot the Flyers 30-15 in the first two periods but could not solve Mason, who stopped David Krejci five times in the first two periods.
“I felt like defensively we did a good job tonight keeping them to the outside,” Carlo said. “The forwards have been helping us out by buying in more defensively.”
NOTES: Bruins D Zdeno Chara sat out his fourth straight game with a lower body injury and was joined on the injured list by D John-Michael Liles, who is out indefinitely with a concussion after crashing headfirst into the boards on Sunday. In their place the Bruins went with a third defense pairing of Joe Morrow and Colin Miller. Kevan Miller played in just his fourth game and saw time on the Bruins’ second defense unit with rookie Brandon Carlo. ... Flyers LW Michael Raffl was promoted to a top line with C Claude Giroux and RW Jakub Voracek. ... The Flyers are back in action on Thursday night in Ottawa when they take on the Senators. ... The Bruins return home to face the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday.