Posted April 01, 2012 on
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New York Rangers
Jakub Voracek scored twice in the third period to break open a tight game and lift the Philadelphia Flyers to a 6-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday.
Wayne Simmonds, Claude Giroux, Max Talbot and Marc-Andre Bourdon also scored for Philadelphia while Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 43 shots as the Flyers pulled within a point of the Penguins for the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
The game served as a preview of what could be a heated first-round playoff matchup. The intensity bubbled over late during an extended third-period brawl that even had the coaches of both teams yelling across the glass at each other.
Steve Sullivan scored twice for Pittsburgh and James Neal added his 39th of the season, but the Penguins couldn't hold an early two-goal lead. Marc-Andre Fleury made 20 saves yet remains one victory short of Tom Barrasso's franchise record for career wins.
Fleury will have three more chances to tie the mark before the regular season ends - including the regular season finale against Philadelphia on Saturday - but at the moment the Penguins have much bigger issues.
Pittsburgh appeared on the verge of chasing down the New York Rangers for the top spot in the Eastern Conference a week ago.
Instead the Penguins have dropped three of four and lead the Flyers by one point in the standings with three games to play.
The fourth seed will have home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs, though it might not matter to Philadelphia. The Flyers are 5-0 at Consol Energy Center since it opened in October 2010.
Pittsburgh's frustration bubbled over late after captain Sidney Crosby took a hard hit from Philadelphia center Brayden Schenn in the third period. He slowly got back to his feet and returned to the game, but teammate Arron Asham tried to exact some revenge by taking on Schenn a few minutes later.
It led to a chaotic sequence in which all 10 players on the ice started fighting, with Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma and assistant Tony Granato screaming over the glass at Philadelphia's Peter Laviolette.
It was an exclamation point for the Flyers, who have struggled during daytime games this season. Philadelphia came in with a 4-8-2 record when the puck is dropped before 3 p.m. local time.
Those numbers include a 4-3 shootout loss to the Senators on Saturday in which the Flyers fell behind 3-0 in the first period.
A day later, Philadelphia was no sharper.
The Penguins raced to a 2-0 lead in the first 5 minutes. Sullivan scored his 16th of the season on a knuckled one-timer that deflected off a Philadelphia player and over Bobrovsky into the net.
There was no fortunate bounce necessary on Pittsburgh's next score. Neal collected his 39th on the season by parking himself on the doorstep then wristing a shot over Bobrovsky's right shoulder thanks to a slick pass from Evgeni Malkin.
Yet just like Saturday, the Flyers rallied.
And unlike Saturday, they came all the way back.
Giroux gave Philadelphia life late in the first when his shot from the point squirted between Fleury's pads. Scott Hartnell didn't receive an assist on the play, but he barreled into Fleury, obstructing the goaltender's view.
Talbot tied it at 2 early in the second period. The former Pittsburgh star - a key cog in the franchise's 2009 Stanley Cup - deflected a shot past Fleury and the ensuing boos indicated not all of Pittsburgh's vitriol is saved for Jaromir Jagr alone.
Simmonds - who scored on Saturday when a puck smashed off his face into the net - gave the Flyers their first lead in a more conventional fashion when he tapped in a pass from Voracek past Fleury 2:35 into the third period.
Voracek pushed the lead to 4-2 on a nifty backhand. When Bourdon's slap shot from the point deflected off Pittsburgh defender Zbynek Michalek the Flyers had things well in hand.
Then things got out of hand.
NOTES: Philadelphia D Nicklas Grossman went to the dressing room with a lower body injury during a first-period collision with Pittsburgh's Joe Vitale and did not return ... The Penguins play in Boston on Tuesday while the Flyers host the Rangers. ... Pittsburgh's Pascal Dupuis recorded the second assist on Sullivan's goal to extend his points streak to 14 games, the longest in the NHL this season. ... The Penguins are 6-4-1 since Crosby returned from concussion-like symptoms on March 15.
BEST OF MAXIM
BY A NOSE
Philadelphia Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds scored a goal in the second period of Saturday's NHL game against the Ottawa Senators, but it was a painful one. In fact, Simmonds didn't actually shoot the puck, but got credit for the goal after a slapshot by teammate Brayden Schenn hit Simmonds in the face and the puck found its way into the net. Simmonds went to the locker...
The Philadelphia Flyers announced that forward Danny Briere is out indefinitely with an upper-back contusion suffered Sunday when he was decked in the third period by a clean hit from Penguins forward Joe Vitale.
That hit helped instigate sparked an on-ice scuffle that resulted in 62 minutes in penalties, including one fighting major for both teams, and the ejections of Philadelphia...
Bodies flying. Punches thrown. Coaches chirping. Hulkamania running wild. Sunday's Flyers-Penguins clash was awesome in every sense of the word. And the best part is that the two teams will likely be hooking up again in the first round of the playoffs. The Flyers climbed out of an early two-goal deficit on Sunday, and eventually threw a stranglehold on a game that evoked memories...
Scott Hartnell decided to have a little fun at the expense of a Pittsburgh Penguins' fan on Sunday.
During the waning moments of the Philadelphia Flyers' 6-4 victory over their Atlantic Division rival on Sunday, Hartnell mocked the fan - who had a striking resemblance to Hulk Hogan - by doing the former pro wrestler's signature move of cupping his hand to his ear.
Flyers coach Peter Laviolette was fined $10,000 Monday after calling out counterpart Dan Bylsma for sending out his checking line late in Philadelphia's 6-3 win at Pittsburgh on Sunday.
Penguins assistant Tony Granato, who stepped on the top of the side boards and in between the two head coaches, was also fined $2,500.
The incident occurred at 18:57 of the third period. Fine...
Philadelphia Flyers coach Peter Laviolette was fined $10,000 by the NHL for his actions in the waning minutes of Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Laviolette broke a stick and screamed at Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma after Flyers center Daniel Briere was flattened by Pittsburgh's Joe Vitale.
Pittsburgh assistant coach Tony Granato, who got between the coaches...
Danny Briere was injured by a hit from Pittsburgh Center Joe Vitale. Briere is out indefnitely with a back contusion.
The Philadelphia Flyers won an important matchup with the Pittsburgh Penguins yesterday, but the fallout from the game, and the brawl that ensued in the final minutes continued to be felt today.
Danny Briere was hit hard late in the game yesterday by Pittsburgh center...
Guess who's back, back again. Pens are back, tell a friend. I'm back too, once again I must give a huge shout out to the DOY family for picking up my slack while I deal with ****. Bruins and Penguins meet up for the 4th and final time tonight. Despite having locked up their playoff spots, both teams have something to play for tonight. Penguins are looking to gain...
Hartnell is the perfect kind of villain. He always has been.
In this one, the Pens jumped out to a 2-0 lead and then let the Flyers completely take the game over. Kind of glad this happened, though. Pens may have gotten a sense of entitlement when Crosby came back and haven't played the same kind of hockey they&...
NEW YORK (April 2, 2012)—Philadelphia Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette and Pittsburgh Penguins assistant coach Tony Granato have been fined $10,000 and $2,500, respectively, for their actions late in NHL Game #1185 at Pittsburgh, Sunday, April 1, the National Hockey League announced today.
Editor’s note: Last night was one of those night’s where we weren’t able to write a recap. Sorry for that. Here’s the Whale recap though.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 3, Connecticut Whale 0
By Brian Ring
Hartford, CT, March 30, 2012 – The Connecticut Whale were defeated by the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, 3-0, Friday night at the XL Center. Penguins goaltender Scott...