PHILADELPHIA — A night after getting routed, Brian Elliott gave the Flyers exactly the skilful, steady performance they needed — with a little luck, too.
The veteran goalie made 40 saves and was twice helped by the post in his 41st career shutout, Travis Konecny scored his fourth goal in four games and the Flyers beat the Buffalo Sabres 3-0 on Tuesday night.
Jakub Voracek also scored and Kevin Hayes added an empty-netter for Philadelphia, which bounced back from Monday night’s 6-1 loss to the Sabres.
Elliott saw action in Monday’s game, making 13 saves on 15 shots, after starter Carter Hart got pulled.
"It’s nice to have a little playing time under the belt before your first start," he said.
Elliott was sharp early. He made two point-blank saves on Jeff Skinner late in the first period, first with his right pad and then his glove.
"He made some huge saves for us to keep that game 0-0," Flyers captain Claude Giroux said.
Fortune was on his side in the second. Colin Miller’s hard slap shot from the point hit the crossbar and bounced all the way back to centre ice. Victor Olofsson hit the post from a sharp angle 2 1/2 minutes later.
Elliott got in the way of the rest of Buffalo’s shots. He kept the Flyers on top with a glove save on Eric Staal’s wrist shot from the slot with 8 1/2 minutes left in the third.
"We know that (Elliott) competes," Konecny said. "He did exactly what we thought, and it kept us in the game. He has a lot of experience, and we need those big games for us."
Elliott improved to 14-2-2 in 19 career appearances against the Sabres.
Buffalo credited Elliott but added that the quality of their opportunities could’ve been higher.
"He was good, but I think there were moments where we could’ve done a better job of getting to him and getting to the net," Sabres forward Eric Staal said.
Konecny broke the scoreless tie with 2:09 left in the second on a breakaway, beating Carter Hutton with a backhand that went through the goalie’s legs. Oskar Lindblom set up the goal with a long bank pass from deep in the defensive zone that landed perfectly on Konecny’s stick in Buffalo’s zone.
The Flyers forward said he got some advice in the pregame from Philadelphia goalie coach Kim Dillabaugh on how to beat Hutton.
"He gave me a few tips on what this guy was doing (Monday)," Konecny said.
Voraeck made it 2-0 with 6:17 remaining, finishing a 2-on-1 with Hayes, before Hayes capped the scoring with 1:42 left.
"We had to bounce back from our performance (Monday)," Flyers coach Alain Vigneault said. "This was in my estimation our best compete."
Hutton was replaced by Jonas Johansson to begin the third period due to injury. Hutton had his helmet knocked off after being hit in the head by the Flyers’ Ivan Provorov early in the second period after Provorov was checked into the goalie by Brandon Montour. Hutton had 19 saves.
In addition to Buffalo’s Hutton, Flyers D Philippe Myers and C Morgan Frost were both injured on checks by Jake McCabe and didn’t return. Vigneault said they would have further tests on Wednesday.
EIGHT IS ENOUGH
The Flyers played their first of what is scheduled to be eight back-to-backs this season. Buffalo, which opened its season with back-to-backs in each of its first four games, also is scheduled to play eight this season.
The Sabres recalled forward Rasmus Asplund from the team’s taxi squad prior to the contest.
HIT IN THE POCKET
Flyers’ Nicolas Aube-Kubel was fined $4,633.62 for roughing Buffalo’s Rasmus Dahlin in the third period of Monday’s game. Aube-Kubel was given a double-minor for high sticking on the play. Sabres coach Ralph Krueger expressed disappointment prior to the game that Aube-Kubel wasn’t suspended.
Sabres: Play the first of two straight on the road in Washington on Friday night.
Flyers: Start a four-game road trip at Boston on Thursday night.