WINNIPEG – Ilya Bryzgalov bounced back against the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday.
The Flyers goaltender made 24 saves as Philadelphia won on the road for the just the second time this season with a 3-2 victory over the Winnipeg Jets.
“It’s a very important two points for us,” said Bryzgalov, who noted they have four more road games ahead in the next few days.
The veteran Russian goalie had been pulled from Monday’s 5-2 loss to the Maple Leafs in Toronto after giving up four goals on 14 shots.
Brayden Schenn, Kimmo Timonen, on the power play, and Tye McGinn scored for the Flyers (6-7-1) on Tuesday. Jakub Voracek had two assists.
Andrew Ladd scored both goals for the Jets (5-6-1), the last in the dying seconds. Winnipeg was coming off a 1-0 win in Ottawa on Saturday.
Bryzgalov has struggled this season but was solid as the Jets came on strong in the first and second periods.
“All of us bounced back today and played very very well,” he said, but he agreed that Philadelphia looked a little tired in the opening period. “Obviously we played last night and we came late (to Winnipeg) and they were rested and . . . came out full of energy, with a supportive defence, and wanted to probably make the result early in the game.
“But we survived the storm.”
Defenceman Braydon Coburn also thought the Flyers came out flat.
“Any time you play back-to-back it’s a tough situation but it’s something that every team in the league has to deal with,” said Coburn.
Al Montoya recorded his first loss as a starter for the Jets, after two wins including Saturday’s 1-0 shutout, when he took over for a flu-stricken Ondrej Pavelec.
Pavelec replaced him in the third after a lower-body injury that coach Claude Claude Noel said happened early in the second period, when the goalie got hit by a puck after a faceoff.
After spending some time on the training table getting his own aches tended, Ladd took little solace in his two goals, the last scored in the final seconds after the Jets pulled Pavelec for an extra attacker.
“Same old 40 minutes that we played well and we did things that we liked and then some inconsistencies in the other parts of our game that cost us,” he said.
Ladd agreed there was a little desperation in the Jets’ dressing room at this point, after playing a team they knew was tired following back-to-back games.
“You’ve got to have the killer instinct to jump on them early and stay on em and not give them any life,” said Ladd. “I thought we had a great start but allowed them to creep their way back in the game.”
The Jets struck out on their three power-play chances and took penalties that sapped their momentum.
“I didn’t really care much for the game, especially the outcome,” said Noel, who described it as a game they could have won and let get away.
“I thought we could have got a lot more A-games from players and we didn’t and we certainly need a lot more.”
He said the line of Ladd, Bryan Little and Blake Wheeler was clearly Winnipeg’s best.
“I thought the Little line was effective in getting pucks to the net and pretty much counted a lot on them and I thought they produced pretty well for us. Certainly it was our best line.”
The Flyers took a 2-1 lead in the first, even though they were outshot 9-6 by the Jets.
Montoya didn’t have much of a chance when Schenn redirected Voracek’s pass right in front of the net, on Philadelphia’s second shot of the game at 8:07.
Winnipeg tied it up at 14:12, when Blake Wheeler fed Ladd just in front of the Flyers net and he squeezed one past Bryzgalov’s short side.
A late cross-checking penalty to defenceman Zach Redmond was costly, with Timonen slamming the puck down a clear path between the faceoff circles that Montoya wasn’t fast enough to block.
There was no scoring in the second, although Winnipeg again outshot the Flyers 10-6 for the period. There was also a short scrap between Jets defenceman Mark Stuart and McGinn.
McGinn then redirected Voracek’s pass into Winnipeg’s net at the 4:17 mark from just outside the crease.Ladd scored his final goal at 19:13 after the Jets pulled their goaltender.
It was also the first game defenceman Dustin Byfuglien has played since the Jets visited Montreal Jan. 29. He got a massive cheer when his name was announced in the starting lineup.
Notes: The Jets went into the game with the most productive defence in the NHL at 34 points, led by top-scorer Tobias Enstrom with 13 points.