Despite Breakout Effort, Travis Konecny Takes Blame for Flyers' Loss Because of ‘stupid Penalty'

He stood there and for a moment, you thought that Travis Konecny, who just celebrated his 20th birthday, was a 10-year NHL veteran, not a rookie.

He accepted the blame for the Flyers' 5-3 loss Monday night to the Columbus Blue Jackets in a game in which the power play went 1 for 8 and the equally-bad penalty kill allowed its seventh goal in the last 15 chances (see game story).

Konecny, who played 16:44, took an emotionally-charged roughing penalty to Columbus' Oliver Bjorkstrand at 7:20 of the third period. Brandon Dubinsky's power-play goal broke the 3-3 tie.

Game-winner.

"Yeah, that's kind of the only thing on my mind right now," Konecny said of the penalty. "I kind of let the game get to me and I was in the mix a lot tonight.

"And for whatever reason, I decided to bump the guy on my way back to the bench and they thought it was a penalty. It's a stupid penalty by me and honestly I put the game in my hands there, it's unacceptable."

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He had played an exceptional game with two goals and missed a hat trick only because the net was dislodged before he scored.

This was his best game as a Flyer (see feature highlight).

Konecny was hustling and diving and playing both ends of the ice like a kid possessed. His penalty was the result of overzealousness.

He admitted it. It happens. At least he was giving everything he had and that is something this Flyers team needs more of these days, throughout the roster.

"Like I said, no excuses why I took the penalty, I have to own up to it now," he said. "Just high on emotion going into the third period. I just felt like I should bump the guy on the way and it cost us the game."

His teammates didn't feel that way.

"I think, maybe if we didn't have nine or 10 power plays or whatever, maybe that ref lets one go in the third," Brayden Schenn said.

"Stuff like that happens. Going to the bench or whatever, guys run into each other but that loss is not on him. I am sure he might feel that way, but it was on the power play."

Special teams is harming the Flyers' stretch-run chances to get back into the wild-card picture.

"I would say it is a big part of the NHL these days," goalie Steve Mason said. "We have to find ways to come out on top in the special teams battle because it's such an important part of the game.

"We had our opportunities on the power play and unfortunately were not able to convert it more than once. They have the opportunity in the third, we have to kill that off."

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