• August 17, 2022

Flyers Sink Islanders 6-1, But at a Cost

The Flyers got the win they were looking for against the New York Islanders, but it was an even chippier affair than the previous game against Pittsburgh. By the end of the third period, 120 penalty minutes were doled out by the officials with a number of players ejected from both teams. “Sign Man” described it best- “Old Time Hockey.”

Coach Peter Laviolette kept the same lines that he went with against Pittsburgh, including Claude Giroux centering Jeff Carter and Darroll Powe. I didn’t think that Carter on the wing was an experiment still worth trying, but that line is starting to click as Carter notched two goals with assists from Powe and Giroux.

Andreas Nodl scored his second goal of the season from a perfect pass from James Van Riemsdyk that beat Islanders goaltender Rick Dipietro up high. The defense accounted for the remaining three Flyers goals in the 6-1 win, including two from Chris Pronger on the powerplay and one from Kimmo Timonen.

The lone goal for the Islanders was the result of a penalty shot awarded to Frans Nielsen, who was hooked by Pronger on a breakaway.

As mentioned earlier, this was a nasty game between the Atlantic Division rivals. Dan Carcillo fought with Zenon Konopka in the first period with both parties getting good shots in. Tempers were visibly flaring as both benches started getting mouthy. A third of the way through the second period, Islander Trent Hunter checked defenseman Andrej Meszaros near the penalty boxes, caushing his head to whip-lash into the boards. Hunter was ejected from the game for boarding.

Meszaros was unconscious for about a minute before eventually being helped up. He skated off on his own power and didn’t return for the rest of the game. The extent of his injury is unknown at this point, but any extended absence will be a loss for the Flyers, as Meszaros has been playing very well on the third defensive pairing.

The bad blood reached a boil in the third period. Konopka dropped gloves with Carcillo for the second time of the game and was ejected at the fight’s conclusion. Several minutes after that, Islander Trevor Gillies was ejected for pushing Danny Briere down long after the whistle was blown. You could tell that the referees were trying to control the tempers of both teams, but it would be for nought.

Prior to the last minute of play, Frans Nielsen started agitating everyone on the ice. Leaning into the faceoff circle with Briere, Nielsen began shouting obscenities at Briere. As soon as the puck was dropped, Briere crosschecked him in the face, sending Nielsen to the ice. Once Nielsen got up, he started racing over to Briere, but was intercepted by Carcillo, who was attempting to protect the Flyers star player. Briere, Nielsen, and Carcillo were ejected from the game.

 

DiPietro skated over to Pronger during the mess, and the two began chatting it up. Dipietro apparently was asking Pronger to let him go fight Carcillo, which caused Pronger to smirk hysterically. I felt sympathetic towards DiPietro earlier, as he appeared to have hurt his knees again at the end of the first period and looked awful for the remainder of the game. His health issues have been well documented and you don’t want to see anything substantial happen to a player injury-wise. That said, he lost my sympathy when he started trying to fight any Flyer that would throw down with him.

My favorite penalty of the game? “Abuse of officials by the bench” against the Islanders.

The Flyers have confirmed on their web site that Briere will have a conference call on Monday with the NHL to discuss the incident. Based on his previous record, I would be surprised if he wasn’t given at least a one game suspension. I don’t blame him for feeling the need to stand up for himself after being pushed around for much of the game, but you can’t cross check someone in the face without consequences.

Briere out of the line-up will give Nikolay Zherdev another chance to show Laviolette that he deserves ice time.  Zherdev may get his shot tomorrow night against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Josh Janet

Josh Janet was raised in Northern New Jersey, but by an odd set of circumstances, is a Philadelphia sports fan. While recently converted to the Phillies, Josh is a diehard Flyers fan and can be expected to stay on top of the latest NHL news.

Read Previous

Here Are My Grades For The Eagles Offense Prior To The Bye

Read Next

Here Are My Grades For The Eagles Defensive Players