In partnership with NBC Sports Philadelphia
The Flyers bounced back in a big way in the ‘Burgh Friday night with a 5-1 win over the Penguins to even the series at 1-1.
Shayne Gostisbehere and Sean Couturier scored one minute and 24 seconds apart while Travis Konecny, Nolan Patrick and Andrew MacDonald also added goals.
Brian Elliott bounced back with an excellent performance, stopping 34 of 35 shots to snap a seven-game postseason losing streak.
The Flyers' special teams took over as the power play connected twice and the penalty kill was a perfect 4 for 4.
With three consecutive shutouts, Penguins goaltender Matt Murray had his postseason scoreless streak snapped at 225 minutes and 49 seconds.
The series shifts to Philadelphia for Game 3 Sunday afternoon.
• Game 1 was too easy for Pittsburgh as the Flyers allowed the Penguins to move with ease throughout the neutral zone and into the offensive zone. The Flyers responded in Game 2 with a more physical presence, taking the body, especially along the boards - an element to their game that was missing in Game 1. The Flyers were fortuitous in drawing a boarding penalty that led to their power-play goal, a shot that Murray should have stopped.
• This may be the first time since early in the season that we've seen the Flyers display a quick-strike ability against the Penguins as they scored their first two goals in a span of one minute and 24 seconds. Couturier tried to catch Murray through the five hole and as the goalie made the save the puck deflected off Kris Letang and past him for a 2-0 lead. The Pens' defensive breakdown left Couturier all alone, which was the key to making it happen.
• The Flyers made the Penguins earn everything in and around the crease. The Flyers' defense had a body on the Penguins forwards and didn't allow them to have the freedom to hang around the blue paint. After giving up a bad first goal in Game 1, Elliott's rebound control was excellent as he steered most of Pittsburgh's shots out of harm's way. It also helped that four Penguins' shots hit posts.
• Elliott came up with the save of the game with 7:28 remaining. After Claude Giroux turned the puck over at the Penguins' blue line, Sidney Crosby raced in all alone on Elliott. The netminder read Crosby's move perfectly and stoned his backhand attempt. With Crosby, there's a guessing game to where he's going to go and credit Elliott, who made a perfect read.
The Penguins hit several posts and Crosby's frustration was evident as he failed to connect on an easy, slam dunk tap-in on the Pens' power play at the end of the second period. Crosby threw his head back in disbelief and then snapped his stick along the crossbar - a rare public display of frustration from the Pens' captain that would have pulled Pittsburgh to within 2-1.