The rookie struggled in Wednesday’s matchup against the Philadelphia Flyers, as Boston fell 6-3 to drop to 1-1-0 on the season. Swayman made just 19 saves on 24 shots faced for his first loss this season. The Bruins received goals from Karson Kuhlman, Taylor Hall and Brad Marchand.
The Flyers (2-0-1) have yet to lose in regulation this season as the offense continues to click on all cylinders for Philadelphia. Cam Atkinson led the way with two goals while Sean Couturier and Joel Farabee each had a goal and an assist.
Boston got out to a strong start to the period, but eight minutes in, Derek Forbort got caught in on a pinch and a great outlet pass from Derrick Brassard sent Atkinson and Farabee on a 2 on1. Atkinson waited and beat Swayman glove side on a shot he’d like to have back.
With just over three minutes left in the opening, the Bruins got on the board courtesy of the fourth line. Trent Frederic’s shot got blocked by Travis Sanheim, but went right to the stick of Kuhlman waiting on the backdoor to smack it in.
What’s one way to kill momentum? Give up a goal in the final minute of a period. Boston mostly outplayed Philadelphia in the opening 20, but a late goal by Farabee on the power play gave the Flyers a 2-1 advantage.
Not much Swayman could do with a blocked shot going to Farabee’s area, but you would like to see Charlie McAvoy tie up Farabee in front a bit better.
So the Bruins gave up the lead with nine seconds left in the first period and that lead was doubled before the second period was two minutes over.
The Flyers ran the old bounce off the boards play the Sedins were famous for. Keith Yandle sent the puck down off the end board where James van Riemsdyk collected and threw the puck on net. A bad, bad rebound by Swayman as he put the puck right in the slot and Scott Laughton made him pay.
However, the Bruins fought back. An awful change attempt by Rasmus Ristolainen allowed McAvoy to send Taylor Hall in on a breakaway, who roofed it over the glove of Martin Jones.
I mean, can Ristolainen get credit with an assist? He’s looking at McAvoy as he has the puck and is turning up the ice and realizes “Oh, crap I have made a mistake.”
Who do you call on when in need of a goal? Brad. Marchand.
After David Pastrnak was stuffed on a wraparound attempt, Marchand cleaned up in front to tie the game at 3-3 with a minute left in the second. Another goal courtesy of Ristolainen!
Well the wheels kind of fell off in the third. After knotting things up at the end of the second, Mike Reilly decided to give the lead right back. He got picked off in the neutral zone by Farabee and it sent the Flyers on 3 on 1 the other way. Farabee hit Atkinson for the tap-in for his second of the night and it was 4-3 Flyers.
Great effort by Hall on the backcheck but just couldn’t tie up Atkinson enough to prevent the goal.
Did someone say Mike Reilly turnover? Dude was like a baker in a pastry shop. He fanned on a D to D pass and it instead went to Couturier. He dropped it back for Travis Konecny who ripped one by Swayman.
You can argue Swayman was just beat by a better shot, but in a one-goal game, you’d like to see him make that save.
Couturier added an empty net goal on the power play to seal the 6-3 win for the Flyers.
- Tough night for Swayman. He was due for a dud and last night was about as bad as it will get. Better to get it out of the way early
- An arguably equally as bad of a night from Reilly. Two turnovers in the neutral zone led directly to Flyers’ goal. One is bad, two is unacceptable, especially minutes apart
- Brad Marchand continues to be the best Bruin out there. Another goal and had a sweet move behind the net to knock two Flyers over
- Cassidy decided to go with Grzelcyk-McAvoy and Forbort-Clifton. While Grzelcyk looked excellent with McAvoy and the two were +2, the bottom duo was a -2 and struggled at times. For as much as I like the Grzelcyk-McAvoy combo, I don’t know if you can afford to play them together. Some defensive shuffling may be in order
- Taylor Hall is a Boston Bruin
- The fourth line was rewarded with the Kuhlman goal. Only forwards that were a plus on the scoresheet. They’re turning into an effective line as Frederic and Nosek combined for 12!! hits
- Nick Foligno left the game with an upper-body injury and did not return. Will likely know more later today after practice and what his status is for tomorrow’s game against Buffalo
- I said the Bruins needed to improve no penalties and they did. Sort of. Only two in this game but Philly was 2-for-2 on the power play (granted one was an empty net). Not a great penalty by Carlo to take late in the third down by two
- The Rasmus Ristolainen trade is looking pretty good for Philly isn’t it!
- Farabee-Atkinson-Brassard were a nightmare to play against. Atkinson and Farabee have three goals this season already, with Farabee having eight in his last nine dating back to last season. Now THAT trade for Atkinson is looking real good early for Philly
- 16 goals in three games for the Flyers. That offense is clicking
The Bruins now turn to Friday as they take on the Buffalo Sabres up at the KeyBank Center. Who would have thought that Boston would be entering this matchup against a Buffalo team that’s 3-0-0? I’m going to say absolutely no one.
Linus Ullmark gets the nod in net. It’s a chance for him to prove what he’s capable of in his first real showing for the Bruins fans. And a chance for the Bruins to bounce back.