It’s been a long time but Flyers hockey is finally back. The Flyers opened the 2020-21 against their state rivals the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Flyers had a pretty quiet offseason with their only signing being left-handed defenseman Erik Gustafsson. 5:12 into the game the Penguins opened the scoring with their free agency pick up Mark Jankowski. At first, it had seemed that the puck had not crossed the line but after other camera angles the referees ruled it a goal. 10 minutes after the Penguins scored the first goal of the new season the Flyers strike with a powerplay tally scored by James Van Riemsdyk. The point shot from Gustafsson was deflected in front by JVR. That was the first of 2 powerplay goals the Flyers scored as they went an impressive 2/3 on the man advantage. In the dying seconds of the opening period Nolan Patrick scored a goal similar to the first one, shot by Gustafsson deflected by Patrick this time. Nolan Patrick missed the entirety of the 2019-20 with migrain problems.
Almost 4 minutes into the 2nd period Carter Hart left his net to go handle the puck. As he tried to pass it down the ice Sidney Crosby put his hand-eye coordnation on display as he deflects the puck out of the air and tapped it in the Flyer goal to tie the game. Late in the period Joel Farabee picks up his 3rd point of the night as he scores off the pass from Hayes. Going into the 2nd intermission the Flyers lead 3-2.
The Penguins open the period scoring with yet another early goal. This time Brandon Tanev the culprit. Minutes later after Nicolas Aube-Kubel missed a chance in front Scott Laughton found a darting Michael Raffl who puts it home to put the Flyers right back in front. Later in the final frame the Flyers took advantage of Pittsburgh’s sloppy play as Sean Couturier recuperated a puck in the defensive zone and centered it for Oskar Lindblom. Lindblom couldn’t bury it but Travis Konecny capitalized on a puck in the slot and quickly put it passed Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry. Konecny’s goal was later awarded to Lindblom, who scored his first goal after defeating cancer. Just seconds later the Flyers break the game wide open as Hayes scores off the assists of Farabee and captain Claude Giroux.
The Philadelphia Flyers will face the Penguins again Friday at 7PM ET. It will be their second game of the shortened 56 game season that the NHL has put into place. The game will be played at the Wells Fargo Centre in Philadelphia.