ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Throughout Thursday night's game, the chants that echoed around the Honda Center made you feel as if your were in South Philly, not Southern California:
"Let's Go Flyers!"
The Flyers attracted their fans, but they didn't play solidly for all three periods.
And that doesn't work too well when you face the NHL's best team, the Anaheim (mighty) Ducks.
Ryan Getzlaf had his second career Gordie Howe hat trick -- a goal, assist, and fight -- as the Ducks outlasted the Flyers, 5-3.
The Flyers, who started a difficult three-game California trip, got to within 3-2 on Matt Read's 14th goal with 14 minutes, 12 seconds left. Frederik Andersen, Anaheim's 6-foot-4, 230-pound backup goalie, made the save on Mark Streit's shot from a wide angle, but the rebound bounced off Read's shin pad and into the net.
But Anaheim made it 4-2 on Daniel Winnik's shorthanded goal with 7:34 remaining.
Kimmo Timonen's cross-ice pass was deflected by Saku Koivu, who started a two-on-on one with Winnik. Robbed by goalie Steve Mason earlier in the period, Winnik deposited the ninth shorthanded goal scored against the Flyers, tying them for the most surrendered in the NHL.
In the closing seconds the Ducks scored an empty-netter by Koivu and Michael Raffl scored for the Flyers.
The Ducks are 22-2-2 at home. The Flyers slipped to 12-13-5 on the road.
The game's turning point probably occurred with 2:37 left in the first period, when Andersen somehow gloved Vinny Lecavalier's point-blank rebound with the score tied at 1-1.
After Steve Downie got caught out of position and Anaheim went on a three-on-two break, Corey Perry took a pass from Getzlaf and scored from the slot with 9:31 left in the second period, giving the Ducks a 3-1 lead. Perry got position on defenseman Braydon Coburn and scored his 29th goal.
The Ducks scored those three goals on just 12 shots.
The Flyers outplayed Anaheim in the opening period, but still faced a 2-1 deficit after the first 20 minutes.
Getzlaf tipped Hampus Lindholm's shot through the legs of Mason with 36 seconds left in the first period to put the Ducks ahead, 2-1. It marked the second time in the last three games that the Flyers had allowed a deflating goal in the waning seconds of a period.
Anaheim, which took a league-best 39-11-5 record into the game, had taken a 1-0 lead on a double deflection with 9:22 to go in the first period. Francois Beauchemin's shot was deflected by Flyers winger Wayne Simmonds and then by former Flyer Patrick Maroon, who was in front of the net. Mason never had a chance, and Maroon was credited with his fifth goal.
About four minutes later, the Flyers knotted the score at 1-all as Lecavalier, from the right circle, took a slick pass from Erik Gustafsson and beat Andersen with three seconds left on a power play.
"Gus made a great play," Lecavalier said after his 12th goal. " ... He came in wide, and I came in on the right side, my one-timer side -- and I knew he was looking for me the whole time."
The Flyers had a 10-5 shots edge and got all three power plays in the opening period.
Breakaways. Downie notched his 100th career assist. ... After missing 10 games with a left high-ankle sprain, winger Zac Rinaldo returned to the lineup. Rinaldo helped draw two first-period penalties on the Ducks. ... Michael Raffl played center for the first time in the NHL, though he played there in Austria. He centered Rinaldo and Adam Hall. ... Kimmo Timonen wasn't 100 percent, but he played through a bruised left foot. ... The Flyers play in Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon. Believe it or not, it will be the first time Brayden Schenn will face his former Kings teammates since he was traded to the Flyers in 2011.
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