Bryzgalov enjoys Winnipeg as Flyers edge Jets

Geoff Kirbyson, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

WINNIPEG -- Ilya Bryzgalov likes Winnipeg after all.
The Philadelphia Flyers goalie, who earned the wrath of Winnipeg Jets hockey fans -- perhaps permanently -- two years ago after he publicly dissed the city when it was rumored the Phoenix Coyotes might relocate to Winnipeg, kicked out 24 shots in a 3-2 victory Tuesday night. The then-Coyotes netminder, who was born in Togliatti, Russia, said he didn't want to move to the Manitoba capital because of the cold weather, the small population and lack of parks.
Bryzgalov later apologized for the remarks but it was too late. Winnipeggers hold a grudge and he was booed every time he touched the puck during his first visit to Winnipeg a year ago and tonight was no different. He was named the third star in Tuesday's game.
When asked whether he was now a fan of Winnipeg, a look of incredulity came over his face and he asked what the question was supposed to mean. When he was reminded of his earlier comments, he shrugged.
"It was a very important two points," he said. "We bounced back from last night (a 5-2 loss in Toronto). We have not got a very good record on the road.
"(The Jets) were rested and full of energy with the support of the fans. We survived the storm."
The fans' cries of "Il-ee-ya" started within the first minute and continued for much of the game. And while he hears them, it doesn't bother him.
"They're just cheering my name. They don't cheer anything bad," he said.
Jets captain Andrew Ladd, who scored both goals for the Jets, said his team played well for 40 minutes but some "inconsistencies" cropped up in their game again and they were unable to bury their chances.
"There has to be some desperation especially against a team playing back-to-back games. We've got to have that killer instinct," he said.
Each player on the Jets roster needs to take a hard look at how they're performing on the ice each and every shift, he said.
"There's more to give. It's not okay to just do your job. We want guys to make an impact every time they're on the ice," he said.
Jets forward Evander Kane said it's frustrating to generate some good scoring chances but come up short.
"You can't let it frustrate you to the point where it's affecting your play," he said. "It's never fun when you get opportunities and the pucks don't go in."
Kimmo Timonen scored the winning goal on a Flyers' power play at 17:08 of the second period. It was the fifth shot of the game on Jets starting goaltender Al Montoya, who left the game after the second period with an injury. He was replaced by Ondrej Pavelec.
The Flyers never trailed. They opened the scoring on their first shot of game at 8:07 of the first period when Brayden Schenn tipped home his third of the season. The Jets tied it a few minutes later when Ladd slapped home a nifty backhand spin-around pass from Blake Wheeler.
Flyers forward Tie McGinn gave his team a 3-1 cushion when a pass from Jakub Voracek deflected in off his skate early in the third period. The play was reviewed but it was determined there was no kicking motion.
Ladd gave the Jets a chance at a last-second comeback with his fifth goal of the year with 46 seconds left to play.
After McGinn bumped into Jets goalie Montoya early in the second period without getting a goaltender interference penalty, he was immediately challenged by Jets defenseman Mark Stuart. McGinn got the knockdown but was behind on points after several solid blows by Stuart.
NOTES: The Jets took the season series from the Flyers last year with a 3-0-1 record. The most memorable game by far was a 9-8 Jets win on Oct. 27, 2011. ... The Flyers are 31-10-3-4 all-time against the Jets/Thrashers franchise. ... Montoya earned his third start of the season and second in a row after a 1-0 shutout over Ottawa last Saturday. ... The Flyers flew into Winnipeg immediately after their 5-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre Monday night. ... Flyers assistant general manager John Paddock was spotted in the press box. Born two hours down the road in Brandon, he is the former coach and GM of the old Jets franchise. ... The Flyers called up left wing Harry Zolnierczyk from Adirondack early Tuesday. He was stoned by Montoya on a first period breakaway. ... Jets center Alex Burmistrov had his first giveaway of the season late in the second period. ... Anthony Peluso, who was picked up on waivers from the St. Louis Blues last month, made his first appearance about three minutes into the game. It didn't take him long to get on the score sheet. He took a penalty for holding at 3:42. He took a second minor for charging midway through the second. ... right wing Chris Thorburn and defenseman Grant Clitsome were healthy scratches for the Jets while defenseman Andreas Lilja, centers Sean Couturier and Tom Sestito did not suit up for the Flyers.

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