NHL Playoff Roundup: Fast start keys Flyers’ win
The NHL roundup …
PHILADELPHIA ó The Flyers showed flashes of the old Broad Street Bullies spirit that revved up the crowd, jolted the offense and got them back in their playoff series against Pittsburgh.
Jeff Carter and Mike Richards scored their first goals of the series early for a sorely needed fast start. Claude Giroux and Simon Gagne put the Flyers ahead for good in a 6-3 victory over the Penguins on Sunday.
Pittsburgh leads the opening-round series 2-1 and Game 4 is Tuesday night in Philadelphia.
Unlike last season’s Eastern Conference finals when the Flyers flopped at home against the Penguins in Game 3, this year’s team came out charged from the opening faceoff.
Carter, the NHL’s scored-leading goal scorer, scored his first of the postseason three minutes into the game, and Richards made it two goals on two shots for the Flyers 2:15 later.
While the shoving and punching invigorated the atmosphere, it was the rapid goal scoring after a punchless first two games that really made the difference for the Flyers.
The two goals in the first period were only one more than the Flyers scored in the first two losses. After the Penguins tied the game with goals 25 seconds apart over two periods, the Flyers came right back at them.
Martin Biron stopped 26 shots and played like the goalie who led the Flyers to the conference finals last year. Keeping up that kind of play in net along with the steady scoring and the series could come back to Philly for Game 6.
Jared Ross scored his first NHL goal in the third to make it 5-2 and Gagne added his second on an empty-netter with 1:36 left to secure the win.
Canucks 3, Blues 2
ST. LOUIS ó Roberto Luongo carried the Vancouver Canucks for two games. Specialty units helped them take a 3-0 series lead against the St. Louis Blues.
The Canucks scored three power-play goals, including Steve Bernier’s go-ahead score in the opening minute of the third period, while again stifling their opponents’ chances with the man advantage in a 3-2 victory Sunday night.
Vancouver, the third seed in the Western Conference, silenced a standing-room crowd of 19,500 for the Blues’ first home playoff game in five seasons.