There is a cliche saying in sports where you call a player a human highlight reel. Let me first preface this post by saying that Antero Niittymaki was exactly that today.
This was the meeting of the Flyers and Capitals since the epic battle that the two teams fought out in last years Eastern Conference Quarter Finals. From the physicality of this game it was obvious there was no love lost between the two teams.
Joffery Lupul got the scoring started for the Flyers in a game where it looked like goals for the Flyers would come at a premium.
The Flyers took a 1-0 advantage going in to the 1st intermission, despite the fact that they were out shot 25-6 in the 1st period. The 25 shots allowed by the Flyers was a franchise record for shots allowed in a home game in one period.
The second period would bring more of the same for the Flyers, being out shot 14-7, however once again the Flyers were the team scoring. Jeff Carter scored his 23rd goal of the season with about 5 minutes left in the 2nd period, then less than a minute later Carter lit the lamp again this time shorthanded for his 4th and the teams 13th (correction for my last recap that was the teams 12th not 11th) shorthanded goal.
The Flyers would continue with their theme of doubling there goal total from the period before. The Flyers put in 4 goals in the 3rd period, 3 of them courasy of Scott Hartnell. The Flyers offensive explosion came off the heals of a goalie change that the Captials made during the 2nd intermission. The Flyers would end up smashing Washington 7-1, in a game where they could of very easily lost by the same margin.
In a game which featured 8 goals scored the show was stolen by Niittymaki. Niittymaki made increadible stops look routine all afternoon and single-handedly maintained a Flyers lead into the 1st and 2nd intermissions. To add to this career proformace Niitty was was also made 12 saves on the leagues most dynamic offensive player, Alexander Oveckin. Niiitymaki had a super-star caliber start stopping an exposive Capitals teams riding a 5 game winning streak. Niittymaki stopped 47 out of 48 shots and earning himself the 1st star of the game.
The Flyers look to contine their scoring spree as they travel up the turn-pike for divison throwdown with the Devils, Sunday 1pm.