Capitals 8, Flyers 2

New coach, same result for the Philadelphia Flyers.

With Peter Laviolette making his Flyers debut behind the bench,

Tomas Fleischmann and Mike Green scored two goals apiece, and

Nicklas Backstrom added a goal and four assists, leading the

streaking Washington Capitals to a 8-2 win over Philadelphia on

Saturday night.

It was the seventh loss in eight games for the Flyers, who were

considered to be a Stanley Cup contender before the season.

Philadelphia fired coach John Stevens on Friday and hired

Laviolette to replace him.

Washington stormed ahead with three goals during a

momentum-changing 9-minute power play that began at 14:33 of the

first period and carried into the second. Dan Carcillo and Matt

Bradley got into a shoving match at center ice, and Philadelphia’s

Carcillo landed a big punch as Bradley was dropping his gloves.

“Obviously not the start we wanted,” defenseman Chris Pronger

said. “Getting down 1-0, the battle back to finally get a goal and

start feeling good about ourselves and shoot ourselves in the foot

with a nine-minute penalty that ultimately led to (three)

goals.

“From that you’re (4-1) and it starts to become pretty

embarrassing. We struggled on penalty killing. Until we get that

figured out, we’re going to be in this predicament again.”

The Southeast Division-leading Capitals didn’t miss two-time NHL

MVP Alex Ovechkin, who served the final game of a two-game

suspension. In winning its fifth straight, Washington set a season

high in goals scored.

Philadelphia’s poor play continued. The Capitals took a 1-0 lead

just 57 seconds in when Fleischmann knocked in a rebound off

Brendan Morrison’s slap shot.

Mika Pyorala tied it at 12:06, putting a rebound past goalie

Jose Theodore and ending Philadelphia’s goal-less streak at 172

minutes, 10 seconds. The Flyers’ previous goal was scored on Nov.

27 in the first period against Buffalo. They were shut out in

consecutive losses to Atlanta and Vancouver before Stevens was

fired.

The tide tied after Carcillo and Bradley tangled. Following

Carcillo’s punch, Bradley fell to the ice and left the game.

Despite being in the process of dropping his gloves, Bradley wasn’t

penalized. Carcillo received 19 minutes and a game misconduct,

resulting in the power play. The Flyers’ 18 penalty minutes per

game lead the NHL.

“I saw him drop his gloves, so I started punching,” said

Carcillo, who spoke with Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren after

the game. “It was pretty quick, and emotions took over. I’m not

happy about it. I thought we were in a fight. I don’t know why he

waited so long to drop his gloves. Once you see that, you’re in a

fight, and you start punching.”

“I hadn’t dropped my gloves yet,” Bradley said. “Maybe it’s

my fault for not expecting that, but I was willing to fight him.

Obviously, I didn’t get started.”

Philadelphia captain Mike Richards said he spoke with Carcillo

and reminded him about the consequences of undisciplined play.

“All I can do is hold people accountable in here, and I don’t

think it will happen again,” he said.

With the advantage, Fleischmann scored his second goal of the

game with 3:20 left in the period, on a wrist shot from just

outside the circle that beat Ray Emery to the glove side. Just 20

seconds later, Green scored on a wrist shot from the top of the

circle that sailed over Emery’s shoulder.

“Matt is one of the most popular players on the team, so when

somebody takes liberties with him like that, I think the guys

rallied around and wanted to make them pay,” Capitals coach Bruce

Boudreau said. “We didn’t want this to be for nothing.”

The Flyers trailed 4-1 after the power play.

Emery was pulled in the second period after allowing a goal to

Chris Clark. Brian Boucher came on and surrendered three more

goals.

Laviolette, who led the Carolina Hurricanes to the Stanley Cup

championship in 2006, wants the Flyers to be a more disciplined

team.

“I’ve never seen a nine-minute power play,” he said. “My

thought is the whole thing never should’ve happened. We got hit; we

should’ve skated away and kept playing. There ended up being a

confrontation. I didn’t see it after the two-minute original

penalty which shouldn’t have happened because if we’re going to go

to the (penalty) box in an undisciplined manner we’re not going to

win hockey games.

“It should’ve been avoided.”

NOTES: The eight goals were the most scored by the Capitals this

season and allowed by the Flyers.