Flyers blanked in Edmonton

The Flyers' Jody Shelley lands a right on Edmonton's Darcy Hordichuk in the first period.
The Flyers' Jody Shelley lands a right on Edmonton's Darcy Hordichuk in the first period. (JOHN ULAN / Canadian Press)
Posted: February 24, 2012

EDMONTON, Alberta - Any momentum the Flyers gained from their theatrical win in Winnipeg on Tuesday did not last long.

The Edmonton Oilers, the second-worst NHL team based on points, defeated the floundering Flyers, 2-0, at Rexall Place on Thursday night and prevented the visitors from recording their first winning streak in six weeks.

Devan Dubnyk, playing because of a groin injury to Nikolai Khabibulin, made 35 saves to register his first shutout of the season. He entered the night with just a 2.97 goals-against average but shut down a team that began Thursday leading the NHL in goals.

The Flyers, who allowed another power-play goal, have not won two in a row since Jan. 10 and 12, when they scored one-goal wins over Carolina and the Islanders, respectively. They have won just seven of 18 games (7-8-3) since Jan. 12.

Jordan Eberle had his 27th goal and an assist for Edmonton, which has not lost to the Flyers at home since 2001. The Flyers are 0-3-2 here in that span.

With 2 minutes, 54 seconds left, Ilya Bryzgalov stopped Shawn Horcoff on a penalty shot after the Edmonton forward was pulled down by Kimmo Timonen as he skated in on a shorthanded breakaway.

The Flyers controlled most of the opening 20 minutes but fell into a 1-0 hole early in the second period. Again, they were victimized by their penalty-killing unit.

Edmonton's Ryan Whitney dumped a puck off the backboards, and Taylor Hall knocked the rebound past Bryzgalov from deep in the right circle. That gave the Oilers a 1-0 lead after 3:26 of the second period.

It gave opponents goals on their last four power plays against the Flyers, who surrendered three extra-man scores to Winnipeg on Tuesday.

Hall's tally also marked the sixth straight game in which the Flyers had surrendered the first goal - and the ninth in the last 10 contests.

About 4½ minutes after Hall's score, Bryzgalov allowed a soft goal as Eberle's slot shot hit off his pads and trickled through his legs and into the net, giving the Oilers a 2-0 lead. Braydon Coburn's turnover helped set up the goal.

The Flyers were coming off one of their most stirring victories of the season, a 5-4 overtime win in Winnipeg in which Wayne Simmonds tied the score with 9.7 seconds left in regulation. Jaromir Jagr won it by converting a Danny Briere pass for his 16th career overtime goal, an NHL record.

"I think everyone felt pretty good about that game," Simmonds said after Thursday's morning skate. "When Jagr scored that goal in overtime, it was kind of like it was a relief. We're looking forward to [Thursday] and just keying on the positive things we did last game."

After equaling a franchise road record by firing 55 shots Tuesday, the Flyers continued their relentless attack in Thursday's scoreless opening period, but Dubnyk had all the answers.

Despite winning just 29 percent of the faceoffs, the Flyers controlled play and outshot the Oilers, 14-9, in the first 20 minutes.

The best save of the period belong to Bryzgalov, who robbed Ales Hemsky with 2:04 left in the session, stopping his one-timer from in front.

But Edmonton dominated the second period, outshooting the Flyers, 15-6, and giving the visitors few good scoring chances.

The Flyers' Sean Couturier missed the game with a lower-body injury that is not believed to be serious. General manager Paul Holmgren said the rookie center was day to day.

Without Couturier, Eric Wellwood was back in the lineup and on a line with Max Talbot and Jody Shelley.


Thursday's game ended too late for this edition. For coverage, go to philly.com/flyers.


Contact staff writer Sam Carchidi at scarchidi@phillynews.com or @BroadStBull on Twitter.

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