Jan 25, 2011, 11:17 PM EDT
Well, so much for the Flyers suffering a letdown heading into the All Star break. The 5-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens was the 1,000th home win in Flyers history. The Flyers are the first of the 1967 expansion teams to reach that milestone.
Chris Pronger followed up Claude Giroux's four assist effort against the Blackhawks with four helpers of his own. Jeff Carter and Kimmo Timonen scored on back-to-back 5 on 3's towards the end of the first period to give the Flyers an early 2-0 cushion. Dan Carcillo slammed home a rebound just 0:23 seconds into the third period to put the Flyers up 3-0. The prettiest goal of the night came courtesy of Giroux, who was the beneficiary of a gorgeous pass from Scott Hartnell. [video, thoughts, and notes below]
The teams pretty much traded chances for the bulk of the first period. The wheels came off for Montreal when they were whistled for three consecutive penalties over the span of a minute and a half. The Flyers finally got their power play clicking (just in time for the break) and took advantage.
The second period was dominated by the orange and black. At one point in the period the Flyers went into swarm mode and held the puck in the Montreal end for what had to have been two straight minutes. They were first to loose pucks, worked the cycle, and generally outworked Montreal.
The Canadiens cut the Flyers lead to 3-1 on a goal by David Desharnais, but Giroux responded just four minutes later to push the lead back to three goals. Mathieu Darche beat Sergei Bobrovsky with a little over four minutes left to play in the third to again cut the lead to two goals. Finally, Danny Briere scored an empty netter, his 26th goal of the season, to close out the scoring.
- Blair Betts was a monster on the PK. He logged 6:53 of ice time while the Flyers were shorthanded. He also blocked two shots, including one with his glove.
- Nik Zherdev was the Flyers most physical player in the first period. No, that is not a typo. At one point Nik Z. deposited a Canadiens player into the Montreal bench. At another point his forechecking forced a Habs turnover, which was picked up by Giroux, who fired a shot off the post.
- Bob saved 29 of 31 shots, including a ridiculous hold on to the post in mid-split save on Jeff Halpern.
- Mike Richards chipped in two assists and played exactly how you'd want your captain to play.
- The Flyers closed out the month of January with a 10-2 record. They are now 33-12-5 for 71 points through 50 games, which ranks as the third-best record in franchise history.
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