Flyers top Flames to snap 10-game skid
CALGARY, Alberta — Scott Laughton picked a good time to record the second two-goal game of his NHL career.
Valtteri Filppula and Michael Raffl had a goal and an assist each as the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Calgary Flames 5-2 on Monday at the Scotiabank Saddledome to snap their 10-game losing streak (0-5-5).
“To get a big win like that collectively as a group, I thought everyone battled really hard,” said Laughton, who also scored twice in Philadelphia’s 8-2 win at home over the Washington Capitals on Oct. 16. “It’s a huge win for our group, I think. It started to slip a little bit. We get to 10 games and you start getting in your own head. It’s just a really good feeling for this group right now.”
Wayne Simmonds also scored, while Jakub Voracek had three assists for Philadelphia (9-11-7).
Goalie Brian Elliott, who played for the Flames last season before signing with the Flyers in the offseason, made 43 saves to improve his record to 7-6-6.
“That’s a big streak to end, and in doing it the way we did tonight with punctuation was really good for our group,” said Elliott. “We’ve got to take that and harness that and take it to the next game (on Wednesday in Edmonton). We’ve got to enjoy this, though. We’ve waited a little too long for it.”
Troy Brouwer and Sean Monahan scored for the Flames, who wrapped up their four-game homestand with a 1-3-0 record.
“We’ve got to be able to shrug things off when they happen and move forward,” Brouwer said. “It seems like sometimes we get a little bit down on ourselves and maybe that’s where us as leaders can do a little bit better job of making sure that guys stay up and stay excited and not get down on ourselves.”
Mike Smith finished with 16 saves for Calgary (14-12-1).
When asked what the most frustrating part of the loss was, Flames left winger Matthew Tkachuk responded: “Probably leaving Smitty out to dry. That’s probably the worst.”
Tkachuk was visibly upset after the game and gave short answers to the questions he was asked before abruptly leaving the dressing room.
“That was a tough one,” he said. “We need to be better.”
Brouwer opened the scoring at 18:15 of the opening frame with his first goal of the season and first since March 27 to snap out of a 32-game drought. After swatting the rebound of a Curtis Lazar shot through Elliott’s legs, Brower raised his arms and looked skyward.
“You want to win against every one of your past teams and I don’t know if it was Brouw’s first goal, but he can have that one and I can have the ‘W’,” Elliott said. “That’s good for me.”
It didn’t take long for the Flyers to tie things up as Filppula swatted the puck past Smith just 61 seconds later. Defenseman Andrew MacDonald took the initial point shot that hit Voracek in front of the net and bounced right to Filppula for an easy goal.
The Flyers then scored three goals in 71 seconds in the second period to take a 4-1 lead.
Laughton tipped a point shot by Shayne Gostisbehere that hit the post and then bounced off Smith and into the net at 7:31. Raffl one-timed a pass from Voracek past the Flames’ netminder 25 seconds later.
Then with Michael Frolik in the penalty box for high-sticking, Simmonds tapped a rebound past Smith at 8:42. The Flames had reason to be upset with the power-play goal after replays showed that it was MacDonald, not Frolik, who high-sticked teammate Sean Couturier in the face.
The Flames outshot the Flyers 21-7 in the second and were finally rewarded when Monahan snapped a shot to the short side past Elliott with 1:15 left in the period.
Laughton restored Philadelphia’s three-goal advantage when he scored his third goal of the season at 1:51 of the third.
NOTES: Flyers D Radko Gudas sat out the eighth game of his 10-game suspension for slashing Winnipeg Jets C Mathieu Perreault on Nov. 16. He has sat out both of Philadelphia’s games against Calgary this season and is eligible to return to the lineup on Dec. 12 at home against the Toronto Maple Leafs. ... Philadelphia also scratched D Mark Alt and C Jori Lehtera. ... After being a healthy scratch for the past two games, C Curtis Lazar drew back into Calgary’s lineup in place of C Matt Stajan, who had suited up for four straight contests. ... Flames C Freddie Hamilton was scratched for the third straight time, while D Matt Bartkowski sat out his fourth straight game. Bartkowski has only played one of the past 12 games for the Flames. ... Calgary captain D Mark Giordano played in his 700th NHL game.