The Philadelphia Flyers will be searching for their season-best fifth consecutive victory when they host the Washington Capitals on Wednesday.
The surging Flyers have been extended beyond regulation five times in the past six games. On Sunday night, the Flyers toppled the host Boston Bruins 3-2 in a shootout, thanks to a goal from Joel Farabee and stellar goaltending from 21-year-old Carter Hart.
Hart stopped 26 shots and the Flyers won their fourth in a row in a difficult span of six days.
“Carter made some good saves at the beginning, but he wasn’t really tested,” Flyers coach Alain Vigneault said. “In the third (and after) he was. We needed some saves. We got some huge saves, and we were able to get it done in the shootout.”
Travis Konecny had one goal and one assist in the win at Boston and leads the Flyers with 19 points. Konecny, who has been one of the most consistent players since the season started, said he believes the team’s resurgence is due in large part to Vigneault, who is in his first season.
“He has an expectation for the team and that’s that — every player is accountable for their actions and we have to play the right way and do all the little things the same,” Konecny told NBC Sports. “It’s not one line that has to chip the puck in or play the right way in the D-zone. He’s got every single line, every single player doing the same stuff. And just over time, the consistency shows how dominant we can be. His style of play has worked elsewhere, so we trust it.”
The Capitals suffered a 4-3 shootout loss to the visiting Arizona Coyotes on Monday despite coming back from a three-goal deficit. It snapped a six-game winning streak.
Still, the Capitals will enter this matchup at Philadelphia with a 13-2-4 record.
Washington hasn’t lost in regulation since Oct. 14.
Evgeny Kuznetsov scored two goals in the Capitals’ rare setback Monday.
“It’s the perfect time to improve and we cannot be perfect every time so sometimes we have to go through these types of games, you know,” Kuznetsov told the Washington Post. “But I liked the way we responded in the third.”
Amazingly, the Capitals continue to have an ongoing streak of picking up at least one point in 12 straight games — 10-0-2. Kuznetsov has led the charge with three goals and six assists in his past four games.
The Capitals look to be a daunting challenge for any opponent this season. They’re young. They’re fast. They’re skilled. And they never give up, even when falling behind by three goals.
“The guys believe,” Capitals coach Todd Reirden said. “They believe they’re never out of a game. Things are going to go south for us. You’re not always going to be at your best. For me, it’s important that you understand that. You can’t affect what had happened in the past and let’s move forward.”
Following the loss, look for the Capitals to come out aggressive early in the game against a hot Flyers team.
“The first two periods were not at all how we want to play,” Reirden said. “Credit to the guys for staying with it and turning it around in the third, but we didn’t have to do that to ourselves. We’re fortunate to get a point out of this game.”
–Field Level Media