Giroux Leads Flyers To 7-0 Blowout of Islanders
UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) — The line of Claude Giroux, Matt Read and Jakub Voracek combined for three goals and 10 points Monday, helping the Philadelphia Flyers break a slump with a 7-0 matinee victory over the New York Islanders.
Giroux scored two goals and added an assist, Read had a goal and two assists and Voracek had four assists. Ilya Bryzgalov was solid in making 19 saves for his first shutout of the season and 30th in the NHL.
Zac Rinaldo scored his first goal of the season, and third of his NHL career, when he took a perfect feed from Harry Zolnierczyk and scored into a vacated net to make it 5-0 at 3:31 of the third. Danny Briere closed by scoring twice in the third period — first on a power play with 9:33 left and they win 2:14 remaining.
Giroux got the Flyers going with a goal just 26 seconds into the game and then added another with 5:15 left in the second to push the lead to 4-0. In between, Read and Brayden Schenn scored for the Flyers, who had lost three of four on their six-game trip that ends Wednesday in Pittsburgh.
Evgeni Nabokov played much better than his statistics showed and finished with 18 saves for New York. He kept the Islanders in the game during the first period that was dominated by Philadelphia. He made several key saves to keep the deficit at 1-0, but things got out of control in the game-turning second period.
The Flyers connected just 15 seconds into the middle period when Read scored his seventh of the season, putting in a rebound of Giroux’s shot. Schenn scored a power-play goal at 7:57 — with another assist going to Voracek — and Giroux connected again with 5:15 left when he deftly pulled the puck from behind the net and stuffed it inside the left post.
Philadelphia blew the game open by scoring three times on just six second-period shots.
New York couldn’t sustain the momentum generated by wins over the rival New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils in its previous two games following a five-game losing streak. While the Flyers will soon be heading home, the Islanders will begin a three-game trip at Ottawa on Tuesday.
Giroux was the catalyst for the Flyers, who were in desperate need of a win. After Philadelphia was beaten 4-1 in Montreal on Saturday, Giroux called out his teammates for their lackluster play.
“There’s no compete,” the Flyers captain said. “We’re not winning battles. We’re just going through the motions.
“We should be winning more battles than this. It’s just frustrating to see. I know I have to be better, but a team is 20 guys and you need everybody to show up.”
Giroux hadn’t scored in seven games, and netted only one goal in 14 contests after posting a goal in each of Philadelphia’s first two games of the season.
He took matters into his own hands right after the opening faceoff. Read skipped the puck down low to Giroux, who got behind defenseman Andrew MacDonald and snapped a shot past Nabokov.
The Islanders had been riding a hot power-play unit that scored on seven of 12 chances the previous three games, but it failed them during a 5-on-3 advantage that lasted a full two minutes in the first and generated only one shot.
NOTES: New York’s John Tavares was chosen as the NHL’s first star of last week after scoring five goals and adding two assists in three games, including his fourth career hat trick Saturday against the Devils. … Islanders D Brian Strait injured his left ankle during the second period when he appeared to catch his skate in the ice without being hit and crashed into the boards in front of the New York bench. He was dragged onto the bench by teammates and didn’t return. He was to be reevaluated Tuesday. … Rinaldo hadn’t scored since March 15, 2012 — a span of 24 games — also against the Islanders.
(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)