John Tavares scored two goals to extend his league lead in goals among rookies to 13, however the Philadelphia Flyers came away with a 6-2 victory over the Islanders at the Wachovia Center.
Special teams were the name of the game on Tuesday night, as six of the eight goals scored were either on the power play or came short-handed.
The goals also came in the “buy one get one free” variety. Four different players from both teams combined for the eight goals.
Mike Richards started the scoring off for Philadelphia 9:47 into the first period on a power play goal. With Mark Streit in the box serving a slashing minor, Kimo Timonen sent a slapshot towards Islanders goaltender Martin Biron that looked to be headed just wide of the net.
However, Richards emerged from behind the goal line with Bruno Gervais defending him closely, and deflected the shot past Biron’s shoulder for the 1-0 Philadelphia lead and his 12th goal of the season.
Richards was at it again at the 15:14 mark of the first period, scoring his second goal of the game on a short-handed goal to put the Flyers ahead 2-0. The Islanders power play went to work with Danny Briere in the penalty box serving an elbowing minor. However, on Richards blocked a Streit slap shot and was off on a breakaway, cut towards Biron and fired a shot past the Islanders netminder for his second tally of the game.
Jeff Carter gave Philadelphia a three-goal lead on a power play goal in the second period with his tenth goal of the season. With Brendan Witt in the penalty box, Carter took a Danny Briere pass at the goal line and approached Islanders goaltender Martin Biron. With Biron hugging the near-post, Carter was able to find the smallest of holes between Biron and the post for a 3-0 Flyers lead.
Carter continued the scoring 2:43 later, notching his second goal of the game and period to put the Flyers up 4-0 on a rare even-strength goal. With Briere pounding on a loose puck against Biron’s pads, Carter jumped in and flipped the puck across the goal line for his 11th of the season.
John Tavares cut the Flyers lead to three goals midway through the second period on a power play goal. With the Islanders holding a two-man advantage, Tavares happened to be in the right place at the right time as a Jeff Tambellini slapshot was deflected right to his stick. With Flyers goaltender Brian Boucher out of position, Tavares potted the puck into the empty cage for his 12th goal of the season.
Tavares scored his second goal of the game with 5:05 left in the second period on another power play goal - his 13th of the season. Tavares, parked at his usual spot on the goal line, pounced on a loose puck following a Matt Moulson deflection and put the puck behind an unsuspecting Boucher for to cut the score to 4-2.
The Islanders momentum was short-lived however, when Claude Giroux scored the fifth overall power play goal of the game with 2:31 left in the second period for his fourth goal of the season. With Freddy Meyer in the box, Giroux took a cross-ice pass from Mike Richards and one-timed the pass past Biron to give Philadelphia a 5-2 lead.
Claude Giroux scored his second goal of the game 2:35 into the third period to pad the Flyers lead to 6-2. Giroux redirected a Hartnell cross-ice pass over Biron’s shoulder to pad the Flyers lead to four goals.
Three Stars of the Game:
1. Mike Richards, PHI: Two goals, assist 2. Jeff Carter, PHI: Two goals, including GWG 3. Claude Giroux, PHI: Two goals. Honorable Mention: John Tavares, NYI: Two goals, 22:26 of ice time
Slapshots: Tim Jackman left the game in the first period with a hip-pointer injury and did not return...Philadelphia outshot the Islanders, 37-24...Richards short-handed goal was the first short-handed tally the Islanders have given up all year...Islanders were 2-for-8 on the power play, while the Flyers were 3-for-5 on with the man advantage...Blake Comeau and Rob Schremp (both healthy) were the Islanders scratches...Four different Islanders have suited up with Philadelphia at one point in their career (Freddy Meyer, Martin Biron, Jon Sim, Richard Park)...This was the second meeting between both teams, with the Flyers taking the first meeting 2-1 at the Nassau Coliseum on November 25...Islanders now hold an all-time record of 88-108-29 against Philadelphia.
19 Scott Hartnell - 18 Mike Richards - 28 Claude Giroux
21 James van Riemsdyk - 17 Jeff Carter - 48 Danny Briere
14 Ian Laperriere - 27 Mika Pyorala - 45 Arron Asham
37 Jon Kalinski - 15 Andreas Nodl - 9 David Laliberte
25 Matt Carle - 20 Chris Pronger
5 Braydon Coburn - 44 Kimmo Timonen
77 Ryan Parent - 3 Oskars Bartulis
33 Brian Boucher
30 Johan Backlund
1 - 0 PHI
2 - 0 PHI
3 - 0 PHI
4 - 0 PHI
4 - 1 PHI
4 - 2 PHI
5 - 2 PHI
6 - 2 PHI