The Philadelphia Flyers were looking for a little redemption on Monday, and they got it thanks to their brand new backup goalie.
A few days ago, the Flyers played the role of visitors for the Florida Panthers' home opener, and things went spectacularly wrong. The defense forgot the primary objective of their position (try and keep the other team from scoring), leaving goalie Steve Mason out to dry. And when he wasn't left hanging, Mason torpedoed himself with poor decisions around the net. The result was a 7-1 loss the Flyers would like to forget.
They can now! Philadelphia turned the keys to the crease over to former Capitals goalie, turned Flyers backup, Michal Neuvirth on Monday, and the difference was remarkable. The Flyers were harder on the forecheck, tighter defensively and when they weren't, Neuvirth was there to bail them out with heroics in the crease. It was a 1-0 victory the Flyers are sure to savor.
The only question is which Philly team will show up the rest of the season.
Flyers 1, Panthers 0
3 things we learned
1. Columbus and Boston are in a race to see who will fire their coach first
Because if either team keeps this up any longer, the front offices are going to need sacrificial lambs. The Bruins suffered their worst loss of the season (which is saying something) on Monday to the Lightning. The defense still looks bewildered and even Tuukka Rask is starting to let in goals he should absolutely be stopping. Meanwhile, the Blue Jackets are also 0-3 after a loss in Buffalo where they were thoroughly out-hustled by a struggling Sabres team.
2. Special teams makes the difference for Philadelphia
Neuvirth aside, the other reason the Flyers snuck away with a one-goal win on Monday was the strength of their penalty kill. Consistency and confidence in their backup led the way in that department. With the struggles offensively, it's doubtful the Flyers would've survived with a leaky kill.
3. The Barclays Center brings out the weird in Islanders fans.
Could it be anything other than this Jack Eichel goal? It shows off his elite skills on so many levels, from his speed to his strength on the puck to his absolutely wicked shot. This was his "I made it!" moment.
Number of the Night
3. As in the three shifts Robby Fabbri was allowed to play after his concussion. Yes, it's not always easy to tell right away if a player is concussed. But considering the added concussion spotters by the NHL and NHLPA this year and the fact Fabbri is out indefinitely, the Blues' concussion protocol process has to come into question at some point.