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Fading Flyers hope late surge against Senators has carryover effect

Sam Carchidi, The Philadelphia Inquirer on

Published in Hockey

The Flyers have lost four straight, but they believe their dominating third period -- which enabled them to salvage a point in Saturday's 4-3 shootout loss to lowly Ottawa at the Wells Fargo Center -- will have a carryover effect.

"It's something you can build off of and look forward," winger Travis Konecny said after collecting a career-high three points, all assists, in the game. "We just keep pressing for it."

The Flyers had a 16-3 shots advantage in the third period. For the game, they had 79 shot attempts -- including 24 that were blocked -- while the Senators had just 44 attempts.

"They're playing for their lives, and we knew they were going to come out strong in the third," said Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson, mindful the Flyers are on the playoff bubble with 30 games remaining. "They made a big push."

But falling into a 2-0 first-period deficit came back to haunt them.

"We responded well in the second and third," said center Sean Couturier, who scored his 27th goal, placing him tied for third in the NHL entering Sunday. "We need to play a better 60-minute effort."

Referring to their strong second and third periods, Konecny said the Flyers should "look at the positives now."

A Tuesday matchup in Carolina. The Flyers hold the last Eastern Conference wild-card spot and are one point ahead of the Hurricanes. (The Islanders are tied with the Flyers but have played one more game.)

 

Just three points separate the five teams battling for the two wild-card spots.

The Flyers probably don't want any more games carrying into a shootout. They have an NHL-worst 0-4 record in shootouts this season and have managed just three goals in 16 attempts in the glorified breakaway contests. They were 0 for 6 Saturday and didn't force Anderson to make a difficult save.

Tuesday will mark the first of four meetings with the Hurricanes. In the closely contested Eastern Conference, those games could determine which team sneaks into the playoffs.

Brian Elliott, the Flyers' No. 1 goalie, is expected to return from an undisclosed injury Tuesday. He has been missed. The Flyers have lost all four games that he has been sidelined, allowing 4.5 goals per game in that span.

(c)2018 The Philadelphia Inquirer

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