Return of Hayes, Ellis spoiled in ugly loss to Stars


After an exhilarating comeback victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday, one might've imagined the Flyers would enter Saturday night's contest against the Dallas Stars with some pep in their step — especially with two of their top players returning to the lineup after lengthy absences.

Unfortunately, the Flyers were anything but vitalized. They fell to the struggling Stars 5-2 and handed them their first regulation win of the season.

The Stars entered Saturday night's contest averaging just 2.17 goals per game — good for fourth-worst in the NHL. Their five goals against the Flyers was their largest offensive output of the season.

• Kevin Hayes and Ryan Ellis being back in the lineup was a welcome sight for the Flyers, and while their presence wasn't enough to lift the Flyers over Dallas, it was good to see them both looking comfortable on the ice.

Ellis was thrown right into the fire in his first game back after missing the last nine games with a lower-body injury. The 30-year-old saw 18:45 of ice time and logged an assist.

Hayes, in his first game of the season after undergoing abdominal surgery in September, saw just 14:52 of ice time, but he tallied an assist of his own.

"[Hayes], I thought he had good energy in that first period. Better energy in the third," head coach Alain Vigneault said to reporters in Dallas. "First game, you've got to think that it's a step in the right direction and [Hayes and Ellis] are gonna get better."

• The Flyers still have some issues to solve on the power play, but they did finally break through on the man advantage for the first time since their tilt against the Pittsburgh Penguins on November 4.

Ivan Provorov beat Anton Khudobin with a one-timed bomb from the point 8:07 into the third period.

The Flyers have now converted on the power play just three times in their last 30 opportunities and haven't scored multiple power-play goals in a single game since their 6-3 drubbing of the Boston Bruins on October 20.

• Martin Jones entered the contest with a perfect 3-0-0 record, but his run of perfection came to an end Saturday night.

Of course, this loss certainly can't be blamed on Jones. While he wasn't making the acrobatic saves that Carter Hart pulled off against Carolina on Friday, he kept the Flyers competitive for a large portion of the game.

Jones ended the night making 26 stops on 30 Dallas shots.

• Tyler Seguin continues to terrorize the Flyers. The 29-year-old has now logged 29 points in 24 career games against the Flyers since his NHL career began in 2010.

• The Flyers looked visibly gassed throughout the second game of their back-to-back set. Their tilt against Dallas was also their third game in a four-day span, so it's not a total shock that they appeared sluggish. Luckily, they'll get two days off to regroup before hitting the ice for their next contest.

• The Flyers head back to Philadelphia for a three-game homestand starting Tuesday against the Calgary Flames. Calgary shut the Flyers out 4-0 in their last meeting on October 30.

Things won't get much easier for the Flyers from there. They'll follow up the Calgary game with a tilt against the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday and end the homestand against the Bruins on Saturday.

Subscribe to and rate Flyers Talk

Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher | Art19 | YouTube

Contact Us