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FROM THE LOCKER ROOM: FLYERS 4, SABRES 3

Hartnell a difference-maker for the Flyers for the past month
Tuesday, 01.14.2014 / 11:30 PM ET
By Anthony SanFilippo - Philadelphia Flyers Inside Reporter / Flyers Inside Out
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Flyers Inside Out

BUFFALO – What a difference one month makes.

Scott Hartnell didn’t register a point in the month of October. He scored a goal on November 5 and over the span of the next 40 days had all of 12 points (a span of 20 games).

In the last month the Flyers have played 14 games. Hartnell has 14 points.

It’s his best stretch of this length since posting 15 points in 14 games in February and March, 2012.

That was accentuated by another stellar effort from the Flyers alternate captain against the Sabres as Hartnell had a hand in each of the first three goals, pumping in a power play one-timer and getting a pair of assists on the first two Flyers scores.

Ever since being dropped from the top line to the second, Hartnell has stood out as one of the Flyers best offensive players. Since being matched up with Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds, Hartnell has more than doubled his season output points-wise with 14 points (5 goals, 9 assists) in the 16 games they’ve been together.

Simmonds, who also had a pair of assists Tuesday, has also been on fire since that line was formed (10 goals, seven assists, 17 points) and although it took Schenn a little longer to get rolling, he’s putting the puck in the net as well and has five goals and seven assists for 12 points, scoring all five goals in the last nine games including a pair of third period, game-tying goals – Dec. 30 in Vancouver and Tuesday in Buffalo.

“It’s all about hard work and getting to the net,” said coach Craig Berube. “It’s not any simpler than that. Both Scott and Wayne work hard in the corners and then go to the net and get goals. They’re both good at it – very good at it.”

The 43 points combined from the line in the 16 games they’ve been together are second-best on the Flyers, and has kept pace with the top line of Michael Raffl, Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek, who have been pretty good in their own right. Raffl (2-6-8), Giroux (7-13-20) and Voracek (8-11-19) have combined for 47 points in the same span.

“We’re showing a lot of character,” Hartnell said. “We never give up. We believe in our system. We skate, win battles and get chances.”

Sounds simple enough.

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NOTES: The Flyers now have eight wins this season in which they trailed in the third period (seven in the past 20 games). That is only one shy of tying the franchise record of nine set in 1996-97… The Flyers killed off all four Sabres penalties and have now stopped 30 of 31 on the penalty kill in the past nine games… Hartnell blocked a shot in the second period just above his left ankle, but returned to be the star of the game following his three point night. Hartnell did have one stumble though, in the third period when he provided a classic #HartnellDown moment while skating with the puck. It was so amazing, his teammates were talking about it post game. “Did you see the most epic #HartnellDown ever tonight,” Giroux asked. “I’m going to go tweet about it.” Sure enough, he did.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
S. Gostisbehere 6 1 1 0 2
B. Schenn 6 0 2 2 2
W. Simmonds 6 0 2 -1 2
S. Gagner 6 0 2 1 2
J. Voracek 6 1 0 -1 1
M. Raffl 6 1 0 0 1
R. White 6 1 0 0 1
C. VandeVelde 6 1 0 -1 1
A. MacDonald 6 1 0 0 1
B. Manning 6 0 1 -2 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 2 1 0 .981 0.67
S. Mason 0 3 0 .852 4.09
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