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Wrap: Flyers Unable to Muster a Go-Ahead Goal in 2-1 Loss to Caps

April 17, 2024, 3:02 AM ET [533 Comments]
Bill Meltzer
Philadelphia Flyers Blogger •NHL.com • RSSArchiveCONTACT
In the final game of the 2023-24 regular season, the Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Washington Capitals, 2-1, at the Wells Fargo Center on Tuesday evening. The game-winning goal was an empty-netter by T.J. Oshie late in the third period.

The Flyers came in needing a regulation win to sustain their playoff hopes. They also needed a Montreal Canadiens regulation victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday and a New York Islanders win over the Pittsburgh Penguins in regulation on Thursday.

Less than a minute before Oshie scored the game-winning goal in Philadelphia, the Red Wings scored in the final three seconds of their game in Montreal; thereby eliminating Philadelphia. The Capitals victory clinched the final Eastern Conference playoff spot for Washington. The Red Wings and Penguins were also eliminated.

The opening period ended up being pretty evenly played. The Flyers had a goal disallowed, abated by a hasty whistle on a loose puck in the air that the referee lost sight of and initially thought was covered. The Capitals also later had a fortuitous bounce, but their goal counted.

The Flyers seemed to get some puck luck at 8:17 of the first period. A side angle-shot from Joel Farabee was boxed into the air by goalie Charlie Lindgren. As an erroneous whistle blew -- the puck was loose the entire time -- the puck bounced off Farabee's arm and into the net. After a lengthy video review, the officials ruled that play was dead and the goal was not scored on a continuous play.

Washington took a 1-0 lead at 18:08 of the first period. As Alex Ovechkin (31st goal of the season) went to the net, a Dylan McIlrath shot from up high deflected off Ovechkin's body into the net. The assists went to McIlrath and Oshie.

The Flyers knotted the score at 12:29 of the middle frame. Egor Zamula moved laterally across the blueline and wristed the puck at the net. Erik Johnson (5th) deflected the puck into the net for a 1-1 tie. The assists went to Sean Couturier and Zamula.

With Washington needing a win of any kind -- regulation, overtime or shootout -- to clinch a playoff spot, the Caps were content to play very conservatively in the third period; staying above the puck defensively and taking no risks.

Unable to score a go-ahead goal, the Flyers pulled the goalie for a 6-on-5. At 17:00 of the third period, Oshie (12th) scored an empty net goal. The lone assist went to Nic Dowd.

Samuel Ersson stopped 16 of 17 shots. Lindgren stopped 27 of 28 shots, also benefiting from 32 blocked shots in front of him.

The Flyers went 0-for-1 on the power play. The Capitals did not receive a power play.

Flyers head coach John Tortorella benched Morgan Frost, Bobby Brink and Cam Atkinson for the final 30 minutes of the game.
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