PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Michael Del Zotto and Wayne Simmonds scored third-period goals to rally the Philadelphia Flyers to a 3-1 win over the St. Louis Blues on Thursday night.
Del Zotto and Simmonds helped the Flyers erase a 1-0 hole and give them an important two points in the Eastern Conference playoff chase. Michael Raffl scored an empty-net goal to seal the victory.
Steve Mason stopped 28 shots for the Flyers
Jaden Schwartz scored his 21st goal for the Blues. Brian Elliott was stout in making 28 saves for a Blues team trying to gain ground in the Central Division and Western Conference.
A winter storm that blanketed the Northeast kept thousands of fans home. Even with a lousy record, the Flyers entered fourth in the NHL in attendance with an average of 19,681 fans per game.
About 9,000 fans came to the Wells Fargo Center after a late promotional push in which the Flyers give away tickets to anyone taking public transportation. The Flyers slashed merchandise 50 percent at all stands and offered free hot dogs and pretzels.
The Flyers fans put a bigger rush on the concession stands than the team put on Schwartz for the first two periods.
They recorded only eight shots during a lackluster first, and a neutral zone turnover led to Schwartz’s goal for a 1-0 Blues lead.
It took some time but Philadelphia’s offense perked up in the third.
Del Zotto fired a slap shot from the point through a screen into the top of the net for his ninth goal midway through the period. Simmonds followed with a tip-in minutes later for his 26th goal and a 2-1 Philadelphia lead.
The game was more interesting on social media. The Blues used the #FlyersSelfie tag to tweet a selfie of forward Vladimir Tarasenko, who assisted on the goal, after the first period. The Blues later tried to get the tweet on the Flyers’ big screen.
UFC fighter CM Punk, a noted Chicago Blackhawks fan, tweeted “Let’s Go @NHLFlyers let’s go.” He added, “I used to live there ya know. Plus, The @StLouisBlues. Yuck.”
NOTES: The weather also forced the Flyers to scrap their morning skate. … The Flyers announced 12,531 as the attendance. … Blues C Olli Jokinen was scratched. He was traded for the second time this season at Monday’s trade deadline, from Toronto. D Robert Bortuzzo played after he was acquired from Pittsburgh. … The Blues are 3-10-2 with one tie in their last 16 games in Philadelphia since the 1991-92 season.
This article was written by Dan Gelston from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.