With the way the Flyers played short-handed, he should have been.
The Flyers had lost four consecutive home games after winning nine in a row at the Wachovia Center. They won their second straight overall for the first time since a six-game winning streak ended in early November.
Last in the NHL in penalty killing, the Flyers denied the Devils during a pair of 5-on-3 advantages in the second period. New Jersey went 0-for-4 on power-play chances in the second.
"You never want to go down 5-on-3 back-to-back times, especially against a team like New Jersey," Sharp said. "To watch the penalty kill do a great job gave us a great boost."
And failing to capitalize either time pretty much did in the Devils.
"Any time you kill off a 5-on-3 or kill off back-to-back penalties, that will give your team a big lift," Devils coach Larry Robinson said.
As soon as Philadelphia got back to even strength, it started scoring.
The Flyers snapped a scoreless tie when Knuble knocked the puck past Martin Brodeur for his 12th goal of the year. Nearly 3½ minutes later, Sharp sneaked around the net and flicked the puck past a leaning Brodeur on the right side for his fifth goal and a 2-0 lead.
Sharp scored his second goal in two games and said he was starting to feel more involved in the offense.
"When you have a little bit of success, with that comes a lot of confidence," Sharp said. "To me, the biggest thing is slowing things down in the offensive zone, control the puck and make plays. It's only two games, but I have been feeling better lately and hopefully it will continue."
Brodeur made 31 saves. He was outstanding late in the third, stopping several direct shots when the Flyers skated with a two-man advantage. The Flyers were 0-for-6 on the power play.
"We made it easy on them," Robinson said. "They didn't carry the puck in all night. All they were doing was shooting it around and using their big bodies along the wall like they do, and then crashing the net."
Knuble's 12 goals leave him behind only NHL leader Simon Gagne (23) on the Flyers. Gagne did not have a point.
Robert Esche stopped 30 shots for the Flyers.
"I didn't think it was going to be Jersey's night," Esche said. "I could tell from warmups that we were ready to play."
Both teams were playing their second game in two days. Philadelphia was coming off a 4-3 win over the New York Islanders, while the Devils beat Boston 3-2 Tuesday. The Devils had their season-high three-game winning streak snapped.
|Martin Brodeur stops Jeff Carter on this try. He finishes with 31 saves in a losing effort. (AP)|
|New Jersey (12-10-2)||0||0||1||1|
|Philadelphia (15-6-3) «||0||2||0||2|
Flyers Color Blocked Full Zip Hooded Jacket – Orange/Black Shop Now!
|09:58||Mike Knuble (12), Wrap Shot - Assists: Mike Richards and Chris Therien|
|13:20||Patrick Sharp (5), Slap Shot - Assists: and Branko Radivojevic|
|08:02||Tuomas Pihlman, Slap Shot - Assists: Sean Brown and Alexander Mogilny|
|13:24||Madden: Holding - 2 min.|
|03:27||Rathje: Cross Check - 2 min.|
|06:24||Johnsson: Hooking - 2 min.|
|07:21||Desjardins: Cross Check - 2 min.|
|08:31||Pitkanen: Holding - 2 min.|
|09:29||Gionta: Tripping - 2 min.|
|19:37||Matvichuk: Holding the stick - 2 min.|
|04:28||Matvichuk: Slashing - 2 min.|
|16:37||McGillis: High sticking - 2 min.|
|17:17||White: Cross Check - 2 min.|
|19:20||Sim: Too Many Men on the Ice(bench) - 2 min.|
|SHOTS ON GOAL|
|Attendance - 19573|
|Game Time - 60:00|
|Referees - Kerry Fraser, Dean Warren|
|Line Judges - Brian Mach, Dan Schachte|