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A Night of Firsts for Flyers as They Steamroll the Panthers

Jan 27, 2013, 11:06 AM EDT

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Matt Read netted his first career hat trick, Tye McGinn scored
his first NHL goal, and Luke Schenn lit the lamp for the first time while wearing
Orange & Black in a Flyers’ rout over the Florida Panthers on Saturday night.
There was nothing fluky about their 7-1 victory on Saturday night, either – the switch is
officially flipped to the on position.

The Flyers took it to the Panthers from the moment the puck
dropped, and never let up. The pressure was so relentless it often appeared as
though they were on an extended power play. Philadelphia scored three times in
the first period, twice on a 4-on-4 to close out the second, and twice more in
the final frame to finish off their listless opponent.

Wayne Simmonds and Ruslan Fedotenko bookended the scoring.

Florida pulled netminder Jose Theodore for Scott Clemmensen
after the first intermission, but that accomplished little to stop the waves of
Flyers attackers. For what it’s worth, the Panthers are notably shorthanded
right now, and it certainly showed – but Philly could use the same excuse.

While the night belonged to the Flyers’ youth, it’s worth
noting that Ilya Bryzgalov was superb, and it was not as easy as the final
tally makes it look. Bryz made some absolutely incredible saves, stopping 30 of 31 shots on goal. The only one he left through came on a breakaway thanks to
some exert cherry picking by Florida’s Peter Mueller.

After a slow start, it seems the Flyers finally might be ready for NHL hockey. They’ll be right back at it tonight in Tampa Bay, where the Lightning currently lead the Southeast Division at 3-1.