Eleven seconds into the third period, hundreds of hats were thrown onto the ice after Flyers center Brayden Schenn apparently scored the first hat trick of his career.
As it turned out, Schenn will have to wait to accomplish the feat. The fans didn't seem to mind. They got to watch the Flyers continue their surprising domination of the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center.
Flyers 7, Red Wings 2.
Seconds after Schenn scored his "third" goal, Lou Nolan announced that his first goal had been changed and was being credited to Wayne Simmonds. Schenn had to settle for two goals as the Flyers snapped a four-game losing streak.
"I guess Lou was a little late to the mike, and it cost some fans their hats," said a smiling Schenn, who, at the time he finished off the supposed hat trick, was aware that Simmonds had scored the first goal on a double deflection.
The Flyers (29-27-14) continued their success against Stanley Cup contenders and handed Detroit (37-19-11) its 10th straight regular-season loss at the Wells Fargo Center since 1997.
"It's almost like we're hiding out there," Red Wings star Henrik Zetterberg said. "We're a little afraid. We don't want the puck. . . . When they get that good start today, we get a little hesitant."
The Flyers, 5-0-4 in their last nine games against teams in playoff spots, start a four-game road trip Sunday night in Ottawa, followed by contests in Vancouver, Calgary, and Edmonton.
Simmonds said he tried to get his goal given to Schenn, who also contributed an assist and five hits.
"I asked the ref. I was like, 'Can you give it back to him?' and he kind of shrugged me off," he said. "Brayden played an unbelievable game. He deserved that. He was everywhere on the ice."
The Flyers scored two more goals Saturday than they had in their previous four games combined (five). For one of the few times this season, they gave goalie Steve Mason (31 saves) some offensive support.
"It's nice to help Mase out for once," Schenn said after scoring his 13th and 14th goals of the season. ". . . It just gives confidence to everyone."
In addition to Schenn, Simmonds (three points), Nick Grossmann, Pierre-Eduoard Bellemare, Matt Read, and Zac Rinaldo (two points, seven hits) scored goals, and Claude Giroux collected a pair of assists as the Flyers equaled their highest goal total of the season. Rinaldo's goal was his first this season.
The Flyers, who had their first seven-goal outburst against Detroit since 1990, set the tone in the first period, outshooting the Wings, 15-4, and getting goals from Simmonds and Grossmann to build a 2-0 lead.
Simmonds tipped in Mark Streit's drive while the Flyers were on a power play with 14 minutes, 38 seconds left in the first - the Flyers were 3 for 4 with an extra skater - and Grossmann (five hits) took a slick feed from Sean Couturier and finished off a two-on-one with 2:53 remaining in the period.
It was Grossmann's fifth goal - as many as he had scored in his previous eight seasons combined.
The Flyers are 10 points behind Boston for the last Eastern Conference playoff spot. They have 12 games remaining - two fewer than the Bruins - as they head on the road, where they are just 9-18-8.