PHILADELPHIA — — John Tortorella had simply gained his first recreation with Philadelphia when an outdated pal stopped by means of outdoor the locker room to congratulate him.
“We missed you!” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman instructed the brand new Flyers trainer.
Welcome again to the league, Torts.
He were given greater than a win and a few smartly-needs from the commish — the Flyers awarded Tortorella the sport puck.
“He just laughed and said, ‘See you tomorrow,’” ahead Travis Konecny stated.
Konecny and Morgan Frost scored 23 seconds aside in the second one length to lend a hand Philadelphia beat the New Jersey Devils 5-2 and made Tortorella a winner in his Flyers debut Thursday night time.
Tortorella, who gained a Stanley Cup with Tampa Bay in 2004, was once the large offseason splash for a group coming off a final-position end within the Metropolitan Division. Tortorella promised no fast fixes for a franchise that has bottomed out and a group broadly projected as some of the worst within the NHL this season.
On opening night time, Tortorella grew to become the Flyers into winners.
“I didn’t have any jitters. I was full of anticipation just to play,” Tortorella stated.
Attendance has sagged in fresh seasons, however the Flyers performed to a close to complete-area and famed ring announcer Michael Buffer dropped his “Let’s get ready to rumble!” catchphrase to energise the group. Phillies supervisor Rob Thomson struck the sport-opening drum or even Hall of Famer Eric Lindros was once again in the home. For a group with out bona fide playoff potentialities, the Flyers attempted to create a Game 1 really feel within the season opener.
“We were hard to play against,” Hart stated. “We were in a lot of lanes on pucks, blocking shots.”
Tortorella, who were given a rousing ovation throughout pregame festivities, stated the quick objective was once to verify the Flyers are exhausting to play in opposition to and would earn recognize from the remainder of the NHL. With novices or veterans, Tortorella stated he gained’t play favorites inside of his personal group to get them to that time.
“I’m not going to hold hands and I won’t,” Tortorella stated.
This recreation wasn’t precisely a marquee matchup at the agenda. The Devils posted a 27-46-9 document closing season and completed with 63 issues, the 3rd-worst document within the Eastern Conference. They haven’t made the playoff since 2018.
Alexander Holtz gave the Devils a 1-0 lead 8:01 into the sport along with his first occupation NHL objective and Allison tied it 23 seconds later — the similar span of time between Konecny and Frost’s targets in opposition to Mackenzie Blackwood that put the Flyers forward 3-1.
Damon Severson scored within the 3rd for the Devils to make it 4-2. Frost’s 2nd objective was once an empty-netter.
“We didn’t play well enough defensively,” Devils trainer Lindy Ruff stated. “We got on the wrong side of the puck a couple of times. We know we have to play better defensively. That’s our focus.”
Bettman said the league would not follow other professional sports leagues and move away from the vague — and often misleading — upper or lower body designations for injuries.
“Our players sometimes play a little hurt,” he stated. “That is something that they take great pride in. I don’t want to subject them to any additional injury.”
Bettman also said the league wasn’t necessarily concerned that interest in the Flyers has waned as the team is projected as one of the worst ones in the league.
“I know that ownership is committed and passionate,” he stated. “They always spend to the cap. And I assure you they want to be a competitive team as much as the most passionate fans of the Flyers.”
The Flyers signed D Travis Sanheim to an 8-yr, $50 million contract extension. The 26-yr-outdated Sanheim had seven targets and 31 issues closing season. The 6-foot-4, 208-pounder from Elkhorn, Manitoba, led the Flyers with a plus-9 score, ranked 2nd in moderate time on ice (22:58) and blocked photographs. Philadelphia’s first-spherical select within the 2014 draft, Sanheim has 116 issues in 335 occupation video games over 5 seasons.
“To be drafted not only by Philly, but in Philly, and now to sign a long-term deal here, it means a lot,” Sanheim stated. “I love this city, love the fan base and I’m excited to turn this around and get things going. There’s no better place to win than Philly.”
The Devils go back to New Jersey for his or her house opener Saturday in opposition to Detroit.
The Flyers play at house Saturday — at about the similar time the Phillies host Game 4 of the NLDS around the side road — in opposition to Vancouver.