Avalanche depth displayed in 7-5 win over Flyers

Colorado Avalanche

Philadelphia Flyers’ Zack MacEwen, right, colides with Colorado Avalanche’s Erik Johnson during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Monday, Dec. 6, 2021, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Erik Johnson had a goal and an assist, and the Colorado Avalanche got goals from six other players in the 7-5 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday night.

Nazem Kadri, Gabriel Landeskog, Alex Newhook, Cale Makar, Valeri Nichushkin and Tyson Jost also scored for the Avalanche, who had 50 shots on goal.

Claude Giroux scored twice for Philadelphia, which could tie the club record for consecutive losses Wednesday night at New Jersey. Oskar Lindblom, Cam Atkinson and Scott Laughton also had goals.

Earlier in the day, the Flyers fired Alain Vigneualt after he went 147-74-54 in two-plus seasons and Mike Yeo stepped up as interim coach. Vigneault led the Flyers to the top seed in the Eastern Conference in 2019-20, but they missed the playoffs last season. General manager Chuck Fletcher made the move following Philadelphia’s 7-1 home loss to Tampa Bay on Sunday night.

Fletcher also let go of assistant coach Michel Therrien, who oversaw a power play that entered 30th in the NHL at 13.4%.

Giroux said before the game that the Flyers had no identity.

“We have a lot of things to figure out, a lot of things to work on,” he said. “I doubt that we’re going to solve all of them tonight. But for tonight, go out there tonight in front of our fans, work our butt off and do everything we can to get a win.”

The Flyers may have worked hard, but the result was all too familiar.

Giroux’s slap shot from the slot gave the Flyers a 1-0 lead 6:02 in, but the Avalanche zipped past Philadelphia with speed and skill for four straight goals, culminating with Makar’s rush into the Flyers zone past defenseman Ivan Provorov that he finished with a wrister past goalie Martin Jones on the glove side.

It looked as if Colorado was on its way to a repeat of Tampa Bay’s lopsided victory Sunday, but the Flyers closed the first period with a pair of goals, on Lindblom’s first in 22 games this season and Giroux’s second of the night on a one-timer on the power play.

Philadelphia entered with just nine goals in 67 chances on the man-advantage before scoring a pair in the high-scoring opening period.

The scoring calmed down in the second, as Colorado got the only tally by Nichushkin 1:42 into the period.

The two-goal margin was plenty for the high-scoring Avalanche, who entered leading the NHL in goals per game at 4.00. Philadelphia has struggled to put the puck in the net all season and entered with 34 fewer goals than the Avalanche in one more game played.

The Flyers had gone 17 consecutive games with three goals or fewer before Atkinson’s tally on a one-timer from close range 2:16 into the third pulled Philadelphia to 5-4. Philadelphia last scored more than three goals on Oct. 27.

Kadri restored the two-goal lead with a power-play goal 3½ minutes later for his team-leading 31st point.

Justus Annunen, playing in his second career game, made 27 saves for the Avalanche.

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