Neuvirth's incredible performance leads Flyers past Caps

Sat Apr 23, 2016 1:48am EDT
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(The Sports Xchange) - The Philadelphia Flyers were outshot by a 4-to-1 margin, suffered through a 17-minute shot drought, continued to be inept on the power play and had to rely on the errant skate blade of a Washington Capitals defenseman to find the back of the net.

But none of that matters, because the Flyers are still alive in the playoffs. And their confidence is growing with each unlikely victory.

Michal Neuvirth made a playoff career-high 44 saves and Ryan White scored a second-period goal that deflected off the skate of a defenseman as the Flyers avoided elimination in their first-round series against the Capitals with a 2-0 victory Friday.

"Neuvy stole us a game," Flyers center Ryan Gagner said.

Despite being outshot 44-11, the Flyers closed the margin in the best-of-7 series to 3-2 with Game 6 on Sunday in Philadelphia. It was the Flyers second straight win after falling behind in the series 3-0.

"We outshot them the first two games and we lost, so I'll take it this way," Flyers right winger Jakub Voracek said. "I'd rather have five shots and win the game than have 40 shots and lose."

Neuvirth had one of the most outstanding playoff performances in recent memory, holding the fort with the Capitals outshooting the Flyers 30-5 over the last 40 minutes before Chris VandeVelde put the icing on the victory with an empty-net goal with 30.8 seconds left.

"It's a great game by him from start to finish," Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said. "He did his job and made some huge saves for us while we were under pressure for some good time periods in that hockey game."

In the waning seconds of a second-period power play, Gagner fired a shot from the blue line that got caught in a nest of bodies in front of the net. White corralled the puck and attempted to pass, and his effort ricocheted right off the skate of Washington's Taylor Chorney into the open net to make it 1-0 Philadelphia at the 7:52 mark of the frame.   Continued...

Apr 22, 2016; Washington, DC, USA; Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere (53) skates with the puck past Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin (8) in the first period in game five of the first round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Verizon Center. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports