The second period is when the Flyers seemed to wake up a little bit. The Flyers were finally winning races to the puck, getting solid hits, and pushing the Rangers off the puck. With 7:34 remaining in the period Matt Carle’s shot from the point was stopped by Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqyist but the rebound ended up right on the tape of Flyers rookie Brayden Schenn and Schenn did not miss as he recorded his first career goal to put the Flyers up 1-0. About two minutes later, Max Talbot found a streaking Claude Giroux who put a nice move on Lundqvist and beat him with a top-shelf backhand to put the Flyers up 2-0.
Unfortunately, after Giroux juked Lundqvist out of his jock, he quickly found his jock and buckled down. Thirty seconds later, Rangers’ gritty forward Mike Rupp scored to pull the game to 2-1 and proceeded to take his hand out of his glove and salute. This gesture has become known as the “Jagr salute” in the Delaware Valley. This upset many Flyers fans as Twitter quickly exploded with angry tweets and even the Flyers were commenting on it after the game. Braydon Coburn even said, “I don't know if [the salute] is something that was premeditated on his part or what. We've got a rivalry brewing with these guys. There's some bad blood now.” Despite the angered Flyers, Philadelphia took a 2-1 into the second intermission.
The third period was all Rangers. Just over two and a half minutes into the third period, Mike Rupp beat Sergei Bobrovsky on an extremely soft goal for his second of the game that knotted the game up at 2. Bobrovsky struggled over the coming minutes with controlling his rebounds and dodged some major bullets to keep it a tied game. Unfortunately just about three minutes after Rupp’s tying goal, Brad Richards put the Rangers up one after putting in a big rebound off of a Brandon Dubinsky shot. With the Rangers scoring three unanswered goals, Flyers coach Peter Laviolette called a timeout to regroup his squad.
“No defending player, except the goalkeeper, will be permitted to fall on the puck, hold the puck, pick up the puck, or gather the puck into the body or hands when the puck is within the goal crease. For infringement of this rule, play shall immediately be stopped and a penalty shot shall be ordered against the offending team, but no other penalty shall be given. The rule shall be interpreted so that a penalty shot will be awarded only when the puck is in the crease at the instant the offense occurs.”
It is clear that McDonagh covered the puck so the Flyers were awarded a penalty shot with 19.6 seconds remaining. Rangers coach John Tortorella was upset with the call and the referees overall performance. He stated after the game, "They called a penalty shot which I still don't understand. I'm not sure if NBC got together with the refs to turn this into an overtime game. I thought the game was reffed horrible. I just thought tonight, in that third period, it was disgusting.” Briere skated in on Lundqvist and tried to shoot five-hole only to be denied by one of the best goaltenders in hockey. The Flyers would throw a few more pucks and Lundqvist only to be turned away and ultimately to lose 3-2.
A few things to note:
- The last time the Flyers lost the Winter Classic (2010 in Boston) they went on to win the Eastern Conference and reach the Stanley Cup Finals.
- Jaromir Jagr pulled himself from the game with a calf injury. Jagr only played 7:09.
- Scott Hartnell received a cross checking penalty and a ten minute misconduct after the end of the third period.
- The attendance was 46,967 at Citizens Bank Park
Follow Steve on Twitter @SDolan3
Follow Whiz Wit on Twitter @WhizWitSports