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Wins are music to Flyers' ears

OTTAWA - The techno track playing inside the Flyers' dressing room at Canadian Tire Centre faded out as the players packed their bags for the flight home from Ottawa.

OTTAWA - The techno track playing inside the Flyers' dressing room at Canadian Tire Centre faded out as the players packed their bags for the flight home from Ottawa.

There was a brief pause before the next song started, and then KC & The Sunshine Band's "Get Down Tonight" blared through the speakers.

The doors opened to the media and a scrum ensued around Flyers winger Wayne Simmonds, who scored his sixth goal in Tuesday's 4-2 win, adding an assist to equal five points in the last two games.

"Nice to have the music playing after a game?" Simmonds was asked.

"There's no music after a loss," Simmonds responded.

In that case, it might be time to replace the diaphragm in the speakers. The music has been getting its fair share of play recently.

Tuesday's win was the Flyers' third in a row, their first such streak all season. They've gone 5-2-2 over their last nine games since dropping regulation losses at home in the same week, to Colorado and Washington, by a combined score of 9-2.

"It's been nice, the last little bit I think we've been playing good hockey," Simmonds said. "We're paying a lot more attention to detail and we're getting it done."

Getting it done also leads to more music and happier faces after that five-minute waiting period between the game ending and the locker-room doors opening to the media.

"Success has a way of obviously loosening guys up a little bit," coach Dave Hakstol said after Tuesday's win. "But our guys have been positive all the way through. They've stuck together all the way through and now we have to continue doing the same things. We can enjoy this as we get to the airport and then move on (Wednesday) morning and get ready for the next one. That's basically what we've talked about with our group."

Simmonds - who Hakstol said was "setting the bar" for the Flyers of late - said earlier in the week he wasn't reading much about himself or his team over the last month. But he was well aware that Tuesday was the first time the Flyers had won three straight all season.

"Oh, yeah," Simmonds said. "We're starting to build our confidence, starting to roll now and you can really tell. Everyone has their head up, no matter what happens. If (the other team) scores a goal, everything is fine. We know we have a good team here. We just gotta continue the way we've been playing and support one another.

"It was a little bit tough. But we're a team, we're a family in here. No matter what, we've gotta stick by each other's side. It doesn't matter what criticism we're getting from wherever it's coming from . . . We just gotta stick together in here and make sure, as long as we're all right with each other, it doesn't really matter who else is all right with us."

The Flyers sort of took an "us against the world" mentality when things started going poorly. Hakstol said the recent success was "nothing special about what we're doing." He said the players are sticking to the little things.

"We made an effort that we look at the small picture," captain Claude Giroux said before Tuesday's game. "The small picture right now is 10 games left before Christmas and making sure we put ourselves in a good situation to make a playoff push."

Whether that push happens or not remains to be seen through the rest of the month. But the overall season outlook has much more "Sunshine" now than what it looked like a few weeks back.