Flyers beat Washington 5-1 tonight. Niittymaki made 19 saves, and was beaten by Robert Lang on a goal he had no chance on. He made a big save and the Flyers came back the other way and scored to make it 2-1 and after that the Flyers were in complete control. Niittymaki and the Flyers allowed just 1 second chance shot, and except for spans in the 2nd period, dominated the play.
But they are talking about another start tomorrow against Atlanta, and Kovalchuk and Heatley. These guys are due to take off any game now, i don't know if i want them taking off against our kid goalie
The biggest test was in the first period. In the 2nd the Flyers took control, Ilya Kovalchuk had a fatal giveaway, and the game turned around.
Hackett is questionable for Tuesday's game against New Jersey. I think Niittymaki was sent down so he can play tonight for the Phantoms. Unless the Flyers indeed made a trade for Sean Burke (if there is a deal done, I think we'll find out tonight or tomorrow during the All-Star festivites), Niittymaki will be the one with the team, alternating with Hackett until Robert Esche returns.
Niittymaki, unless injuries hit the goalies again, won't gain a roster spot with the Flyers during the course of this season, but next season, he will be in the mix challenging for the backup role with Hackett.