Carter Hart’s shutout gives Philadelphia Flyers to Game 3 win

Carter Hart #79 of the Philadelphia Flyers (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Carter Hart #79 of the Philadelphia Flyers (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

Carter Hart shutout the Montreal Canadiens in Game 3 to give the Philadelphia Flyers a 2-1 series lead.

After suffering an embarrassing 5-0 defeat in Game 2, the Philadelphia Flyers redeemed themselves Sunday night with a 1-0 win against the Montreal Canadiens. The Flyers have taken a 2-1 series lead.

Philadelphia seemed really slow out of the gates in Game 2, only generating their first shot on goal 16 and a half minutes into the game. Game 3 was a different story. The Flyers weren’t as sloppy with the puck and they didn’t let Montreal’s forecheck bully them like it did in the previous game.

Similar to Montreal, Philadelphia relies heavily on their star goaltender, Carter Hart. After being pulled in Game 2 for allowing four goals in two periods, Hart was back to his usual self on Sunday, stopping all 23 shots he faced in his first career postseason shutout.

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The only goal of the game came at the 5:21 mark of the first period when Jakub Voracek tipped Claude Giroux’s shot past Carey Price, giving his team an early one goal lead. It was important for Philly to get on the board early after getting shutout on Friday night. This was Voracek’s second goal of the postseason.

Philadelphia won the game, but they weren’t necessarily the better team. The game was fairly even in the stats department. Montreal out shot Philly 23-20, while the Flyers had a slight edge in the faceoff department, winning 51% of the draws. Philadelphia did have 24 block shots to Montreal’s 10.

Both teams had a lackluster power play tonight, with Montreal failing to convert on three attempts and Philadelphia on six. The Flyers had a big opportunity to add onto their lead early in the first period when Jesperi Kotkaniemi got a double minor for high sticking Nate Thompson.

On the man advantage, Philadelphia struggled to enter the zone and couldn’t get their power play setup. Philadelphia gave up a few shorthanded scoring opportunities to Montreal, including a two on one in the dying minutes of the game.

Montreal hit the goal post a couple of times in the game, including two shots from Jesperi Kotkaniemi ringing off the bar and out. Like Philly, Montreal’s offense wasn’t able to get too many scoring chances on the power play.

Jesperi Kotkaniemi had a chance to force overtime when he intercepted the puck and was in alone on goal, but he ran out of space and shot the puck into the chest of Hart.

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Montreal didn’t get outplayed today, but like game one, they couldn’t stay out of the box. Luckily for them, the Flyers didn’t capitalize, but they can’t keep taking penalties if they want to stay in this series. Montreal will try to even up the series on Tuesday, while Philadelphia looks to take a 3-1 lead in Game 4.