By Jenny Masters
Sam Reinhart had a hat trick, Carter Verhaeghe scored twice and the Florida Panthers beat the Flyers 6-3.
Jonathan Huberdeau and Aaron Ekblad each had four assists for Florida. Anthony Duclair also scored, and Aleksander Barkov had two assists for Florida, which tied a season best by scoring three times on the power play.
Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 34 shots for the Panthers, improving to 18-3-1 in his last 22 outings.
James van Riemsdyk, Cam Atkinson and Travis Konecny scored for the Flyers, who were bidding to match a season-best by winning three straight games. Carter Hart stopped 31 shots.
“I thought we played hard,” van Riemsdyk said. “Obviously, their power play — I don’t know if they had, what, two or three on that, and that’s a big part of their success. But I thought we played hard and responded in some situations.”
The Panthers toyed with the Flyers for the first 20 minutes, going up 4-0 with the final three goals coming in a span of 5:18. Both of Reinhart’s goals came off shots by Huberdeau — one was a redirection, the other was a blast that Hart saved but bounced into the air and ended up in the net after a baseball-style swing by Reinhart.
Verhaeghe’s goals were both from the right side of the high slot. It was the first time in nearly 22 years that two Panthers had multiple goals in the same period; on April 5, 2000, Ray Whitney and Ray Sheppard each had two in the second period of a 6-3 Florida win over Boston.
“Didn’t come out too great in the first,” Hart said. “They’re a good hockey team. We know that.”
But a big hit and bad outcome got Philadelphia going.
Philadelphia’s Scott Laughton carried the puck into the zone and got checked by Florida’s Petteri Lindbohm, a hard hit but one that looked clean and no penalty was called. Laughton wound up going into the boards and remained on the ice, obviously hurt. He wound up leaving the game with what the Flyers called a head injury and didn’t return.
Konecny went at Lindbohm — who was making his Panthers debut and his first NHL appearance since 2017 — after the play and both picked up fighting majors. That’s when the Flyers began hitting Florida where it hurt most, scoring three goals in a 10-minute span to get within 4-3. Konecny capped the flurry with 1:08 left in the second.
Duclair’s power-play score with 13:01 left gave Florida a two-goal lead again, and Reinhart got the empty-netter with 2:06 remaining.
“Still got a lot of hockey left,” Panthers interim coach Andrew Brunette said. “Hopefully, the numbers will keep going the way they’re going.”