It was madness in Philadelphia on Saturday afternoon where the Flyers were able to stay hot with a 4-3 win in a brutal, chaotic game against the Ottawa Senators that featured a significant injury, fights, some trash talk, and a late cheap shot.
Let’s start with the big injury that saw Travis Konecny, the Flyers’ leading scorer, exit the game in the first period because that is where things seemed to really start devolving into chaos.
Konecny was injured when he was on the receiving end of a crushing open-ice hit from from Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki.
It clearly wasn’t a hit to the head, but it was still a pretty violent collision and a significant impact. Konecny did not return after the hit, while the Flyers simply called it an “upper-body injury.”
The team said an additional update on his status will be provided on Monday. Konecny had scored his 11th goal of the season earlier in the game to give the Flyers an early 1-0 lead.
The Flyers were obviously not pleased with the fact their top producer was injured, and it resulted in a physical end to the first period that eventually saw Jakub Voracek fight Nick Paul with a minute remaining.
Those tensions carried over to the second period when Philadelphia’s Joel Farabee and Ottawa’s Jean-Gabriel Pageau separated themselves from a scrum along the boards and dropped the gloves for a fight of their own just 20 seconds into the period.
Thanks to a flukey Anthony Duclair goal in the second period, where he was able to capitalize on a bad Flyers turnover behind the net, the game was tied heading into the third period. The two teams then exchanged goals (including Duclair’s second of the game) and set the stage for Scott Laughton to score the eventual game-winner with five minutes to play in regulation. He celebrated by skating by the Senators’ bench and having some words for them.
Then, with the game in its closing seconds, Senators forward Brady Tkachuk took it upon himself to cross-check an unsuspecting Laughton in the neutral zone, drop his gloves, and then jump on top of him.
He was given a two-minute for cross-checking and a two-minute minor for roughing.
Given that the Senators were trailing by a goal and still had a chance to tie the game it is hard to call that play by Tkachuk anything other than selfish.
These two teams meet in again in two weeks in Ottawa.
Saturday’s win improves the Flyers to 12-3-4 in their past 19 games and keeps them in a top-three spot in the Metropolitan Division playoff race.