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game recap

Flyers Force Game 5 with 4-2 Win

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:46 AM

Kevin Kurz - philadelphiaflyers.com

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Flyers Force Game 5 with 4-2 Win
Pittsburgh Penguins 2, Philadelphia Flyers 4
(Philadelphia, PA) – The Philadelphia Flyers jumped out to a 3-0 first period lead and were able to hold on for a 4-2 victory in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Penguins on Thursday night at the Wachovia Center.

The win forces a Game 5 in Pittsburgh on Sunday afternoon (3:00 p.m., NBC).

The Flyers took their three-goal cushion into the third period before Jordan Staal’s two goals made the last six minutes of regulation very tense for the sellout crowd, but Joffrey Lupul’s second goal of the night into an empty net with 33 seconds remaining certified the outcome.

It didn’t end there though, as there were several altercations between the two clubs that have now met a total of 12 times this season. Scottie Upshall’s crunching hit of Jordan Staal behind the Flyers’ set sparked a fight between Derian Hatcher and Ryan Malone. On the ensuing faceoff, Mike Richards and Sidney Crosby traded slashes before Richards dropped his gloves and Crosby hid behind the linesman while never letting go of his stick. He did manage to throw a punch after that, however.

“There is no question it is a heated battle,” said Upshall after the game. “The battle of Pennsylvania has really started to come out these last two games. It’s playoff hockey; you have to play rough. You have to play hard in between the whistles and throw your body around and make some clean hard checks.”

Lupul’s third goal of the playoffs put the Flyers ahead early. His slap shot from the top of the circle deflected off of Penguins defenseman Hall Gill’s stick at the point of contact and sailed over the shoulder of Marc-Andre Fleury at 8:27 of the first period.

Danny Briere’s ninth goal of the playoffs and first of the series made it 2-0, when Fleury misplayed a shot from the point by Randy Jones, leaving the rebound for Briere to knock in at 11:48.

Another power play goal with 1:10 left in the period gave the Flyers a three-goal cushion when Jeff Carter backhanded in a loose puck at the side of the crease.

John Stevens was not surprised with his team’s quick start.

“I just thought we'd come out with real good energy. We were skating with the puck. We didn't just get pucks through the neutral zone, we had speed after the puck, which I thought made a difference,” he said. “Obviously, getting the lead was big for us, but we did some really good things in the game, especially early.”

“Tonight we had our legs. Hockey is a weird game but for whatever reason you could see at the start of the game we were skating and that is what we have to do,” added Hatcher.

The Flyers finished the game 2-for-4 on the power play after scoring just one goal on the man advantage through the first three games.

Biron finished with 36 saves to record his ninth victory in his first career playoff run, and stood tall when the Penguins clawed their way back into the contest.

“To have played the way we played in the first period really gave us a chance to, you know, be ready for their two goals in the third period and that gave us a cushion a little bit,” said Biron.

The game marked the first time that the Flyers as a franchise have won Game 4 in when trailing a series three games to none. They were 0-5 prior to Thursday night, with the last coming in 1997 when they fell to the Detroit Red Wings in the Stanley Cup Finals.

The pressure now shifts back to the Penguins, who will want to avoid at all costs having to play a Game 6 at the Wachovia Center next Tuesday.

“You’ve got to win four games. If you go down to their locker room, they’d say the same thing, that the fourth game is the toughest to win,” said Lupul. “That’s not just a cliché, that’s just how it is.

“We were in a series in the first round against Washington where we were up 3-1 and they got a couple of wins, and it seemed like the momentum really shifted. That’s what we’re looking to do here, kind of shift the momentum. Now the same attitude applies for tonight: one more win.”

Ryan Parent, who dressed for the second straight game due to Braydon Coburn’s facial injury, registered his first career playoff point with an assist on the first goal. The Flyers are hopeful Coburn is able to return for Sunday’s game in Pittsburgh, and Stevens hinted that Kimmo Timonen may even be available for the game. Timonen has missed the entire series with a blood clot and was thought to be done for the rest of the season.

FLYERS NOTES

The Flyers scored the first goal in the game for the first time in the series. They are 7-2 overall when that happens, and 2-5 when their opponent scores first. … Philadelphia is 4-2 when leading after the first period, and 7-1 when leading after two.

- - -
scoring summary
1st Period
08:27
PHI
Joffrey Lupul (3) ASST: Scott Hartnell (2), Ryan Parent (1)
1 - 0 PHI
11:48
PHI
PPG - Daniel Briere (9) ASST: Randy Jones (2), Scott Hartnell (3)
2 - 0 PHI
18:50
PHI
PPG - Jeff Carter (6) ASST: R.J. Umberger (5), Jaroslav Modry (3)
3 - 0 PHI
2nd Period
NONE
3rd Period
03:16
PIT
Jordan Staal (4) ASST: Tyler Kennedy (3), Maxime Talbot (2)
3 - 1 PHI
14:11
PIT
Jordan Staal (5) ASST: Tyler Kennedy (4), Maxime Talbot (3)
3 - 2 PHI
19:27
PHI
EN - Joffrey Lupul (4) ASST: Scott Hartnell (4)
4 - 2 PHI
penalty summary
1st Period
05:57
PHI
Daniel Briere  Tripping against  Jordan Staal
09:51
PIT
Sergei Gonchar  Holding against  Mike Richards
12:51
PIT
Kris Letang  Clipping against  Scottie Upshall
14:01
PHI
Mike Richards  Roughing against  Sergei Gonchar
14:01
PHI
Scott Hartnell  Roughing against  Maxime Talbot
14:01
PIT
Maxime Talbot  Roughing against  Scott Hartnell
14:01
PIT
Sergei Gonchar  Roughing against  Scott Hartnell
17:10
PIT
Brooks Orpik  Roughing against  Patrick Thoresen
2nd Period
04:42
PHI
Scottie Upshall  Roughing against  Petr Sykora
04:42
PIT
Petr Sykora  Roughing against  Scottie Upshall
14:17
PHI
Jeff Carter  Tripping against  Evgeni Malkin
18:25
PIT
Petr Sykora  Slashing against  Daniel Briere
3rd Period
19:37
PHI
Scottie Upshall  Charging against  Jordan Staal
19:37
PHI
Derian Hatcher  Holding against  Ryan Malone
19:37
PHI
Derian Hatcher  Fighting (maj) against  Ryan Malone
19:37
PIT
Ryan Malone  Roughing against  Derian Hatcher
19:37
PIT
Ryan Malone  Fighting (maj) against  Derian Hatcher
19:45
PIT
Sidney Crosby  Roughing against  Mike Richards
19:45
PIT
Sidney Crosby  Slashing against  Mike Richards
19:45
PHI
Mike Richards  Roughing against  Sidney Crosby
19:45
PHI
Mike Richards  Slashing against  Sidney Crosby
20:00
PIT
Maxime Talbot  Misconduct (10 min)
goalie stats
Marc-Andre Fleury
Marc-Andre Fleury
SA: 33TOI: 59:05
Saves: 30EV: 18 - 19
PIM: 0PP: 12 - 14
SV%: .909SH: 0 - 0
Martin Biron
SA: 38TOI: 60:00
Saves: 36EV: 32 - 34
PIM: 0PP: 4 - 4
SV%: .947SH: 0 - 0
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