‘Incredible' Hart improves to 5-0-0 as Flyers hold off Panthers


Carter Hart anchored another win Thursday night as the Flyers fended off the Panthers, 4-3, at the Wells Fargo Center.

The 24-year-old delivered a career-high 48 saves.

Tony DeAngelo, Scott Laughton, Zack MacEwen and Joel Farabee provided the Flyers' goals.

John Tortorella's club rolled with 11 forwards and seven defensemen. Fourth-liner Tanner Laczynski was away from the team for a family matter.

"It is never going to be perfect with this hockey club this year, I'll tell you that right now, because we've got so much growing to do," Tortorella said. "But as we've played these first seven games, we've handled situations and you end up having a little success."

The Flyers are 5-2-0.

"I think we knew from the beginning that for us to be successful, every single person has to contribute," Ivan Provorov said. "Whether it's blocking a shot, getting the puck out of the zone, taking a hit, making plays, scoring goals. It has to be a collective effort for us to be successful."

The Panthers (4-3-1) have handed the Flyers one of their two losses.

• Kevin Hayes and Travis Konecny had no problem turning the page from their third-period benching Sunday.

Tortorella said he turned the page right when the game ended.

"I turned the page probably at the 15-minute mark when I accepted that I wasn't going on the ice," Hayes said Thursday after the team's optional morning skate.

"It's done with. It'll have no effect on me tonight."

Konecny assisted both of the Flyers' first-period goals. Hayes assisted the second marker and then added another in the middle frame.

They finished with four combined points.

"I respect everything that Torts brings to this room, I respect all of his ideas and all of his coaching stuff," Hayes said. "Obviously when you get benched, you don't agree with him. I don't think I'll ever agree with a coach that benches me.

"That was his decision. I turned the page immediately. It does nothing to my confidence. I'm not going to sit here and say I agree with it. I don't think anyone would ever agree with getting benched. I know what I can bring to this team and I think I've been doing it."

Staying on the ice-time theme, Morgan Frost played only 7:43 minutes and Wade Allison 5:09.

Allison had a shift in the third period. Frost appeared briefly and committed a penalty.

Tortorella will probably do this a good bit.

"I needed to play Laughts' line and Kevin's line a lot tonight for us to compete with that team," Tortorella said. "I just think some other guys were overwhelmed.

"They suffered a little bit there, but that's the only reason. ... They're going to have to keep on fighting and try to find their ice time."

• Hart, who entered with a 1.75 goals-against average and .949 save percentage, improved to 5-0-0.

He allowed more than two goals in a game for the first time this season.

He faced 18 shots in the first period and had 28 saves by second intermission. He ended up seeing 51 shots.

Brandon Montour trimmed the Flyers' advantage to one early in the third period on a Florida power play. Hart closed the door the rest of the way.

"It's incredible," Konecny said. "He's playing hard, he's playing well. We've got to clean up the stuff in front of him and give him a little bit more of a rest back there."

In the early going of this season, Hart has been the Flyers' best and most important player by far.

"I think that's something we haven't really had the last few years is an identity," Hart said. "We're becoming a gritty hockey team to play against. I think for us to be successful, that's how we have to play — we have to play hard."

Panthers netminder Sergei Bobrovsky, who entered 19-5-1 in his career against the Flyers, yielded the four goals on 22 shots.

• Laughton scored on his first crack at the net-front power play role. He's taking on James van Riemsdyk's job as the big winger is set to miss at least a month with a broken finger.

Laughton's power play marker drew the Flyers even at 2-2 in the first period. He was working on some net-front strategy with Hayes at morning skate.

"He's everywhere in the lineup, it's crazy," Hayes said about Laughton's versatility. "Even throughout the games, if Torts doesn't think games are going well, he switches up lines and Laughty's a guy who's f---ing everywhere. It's fun to see."

• During the second period, Provorov blocked a missile of a shot. He found a way to get back up and defend an ensuing rush.

He was able to take his very next shift on the penalty kill.

Tough customer.

"He's always been just a great competitor," Tortorella said. "I just like his swagger. He's willing to carry a puck, carry it in traffic, turned a net and tried to beat someone on the net, blocking shots. Plays some important minutes for us."

• The Flyers got two reinforcements in Rasmus Ristolainen and Owen Tippett.

Ristolainen made his season debut after missing the first six games with a lower-body injury. He was called for a questionable interference penalty in the second period when he put a clean hit on Patric Hornqvist.

Tippett was back after suffering a head injury in the first period of the season. He picked up an assist on Farabee's second-period goal that cushioned the Flyers' lead to 4-2.

Farabee also collected an assist for a two-point game.

• Appearing to be in pain, DeAngelo went up the tunnel with a little over five minutes left in the second period.

He was able to return in the third period. The Flyers really can't afford any more injuries.

• Tortorella did not have good news Thursday morning on Sean Couturier (back) and Cam Atkinson (upper body).

• The Flyers finish October with a home matchup Saturday against the Hurricanes (7 p.m. ET/NBCSP).

Kieffer Bellows could see his Flyers debut. The Flyers claimed the 24-year-old forward off of waivers Thursday afternoon.

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