Injury-plagued Flyers face struggling Golden Knights
Instead they were dealing with another injury Friday as right winger Travis Konecny left practice early after getting hit in the inside of his foot by a shot.
Philadelphia is already without left winger James van Riemsdyk (lower body injury) and center Nolan Patrick (upper body), both of whom went down in the past week.
“We’re not going to sit here and feel sorry for ourselves,” general manager Ron Hextall told reporters Friday. “We have more depth right now than I think we’ve had in the past. The guys now will go into a little bit more significant positions and have to produce.”
The Flyers (2-2-0) are coming of a 7-4 road win against the Ottawa Senators. Jakub Voracek had two goals and three assists as Philadelphia bounced back from an 8-2 home loss to San Jose Tuesday. Claude Giroux had a goal and an assist against Ottawa, Scott Laughton scored twice, and Radko Gudas had three assists.
“I think a lot of guys are feeling good about themselves after that game, offensively,” Flyers forward Dale Weise told NHL.com. “Obviously, we don’t want to take that many penalties (12), and we’ve got some work to do, but to get an effort like that and come back and score seven goals is huge.”
Goalie Calvin Pickard made 31 saves in his first start with Philadelphia after he was claimed off waivers from the Toronto Maple Leafs on Oct. 2. Pickard was the Knights’ first pick in the expansion draft nearly 16 months ago but was waived when the Knights claimed Malcolm Subban on waivers three days before the start of their inaugural season last October.
Saturday night’s game is a rematch of opening night when the Flyers scored three goals in the second period and beat the Knights 5-2 in Las Vegas as Brian Elliott made 23 saves in his first career start versus Vegas.
The Knights have dropped three straight as they close out a five-game road trip. Vegas took a 1-0 lead against the Penguins Thursday night but couldn’t hold it. Pittsburgh scored three times in a span of 7:03 during the second period of a 4-2 Penguins win.
“It’s frustrating when you come in here and play a good team, and I feel like you control the game for pretty much the entire thing and little breaks cost us,” Knights forward Reilly Smith told the Las Vegas Review Journal. “It’s something we’re going to have to keep our effort high and keep playing the way we’re doing but limit those mistakes.”
Tomas Nosek and Smith scored for Vegas (1-4-0) and Subban made 18 saves. The Knights have been outscored 19-10 in their first five games.
“We just have to keep working and stay with it,” Knights coach Gerard Gallant told NHL.com. “We had a lot of good chances again tonight. The puck didn’t go in the net until late in the game. So (we) have to stay with it and work hard. Sooner or later, it’ll turn for us.”
Vegas goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury is 28-19-2 against the Flyers with a 2.94 goals-against average and .898 save percentage.