Game Day: Flyers / Tampa Bay Rematch
Tonight the Flyers will look to get back to their winning ways against the Tampa bay Lightning (9-7-2) at the Wells Fargo Center. After putting up 18 goals in three games, the Flyers put up a goose egg in Montreal as Carey Price stopped all 41 shots thrown his way.
Tampa played last night against the Islanders and came away with a 4-2 win. This was only Tampa's second win in their last 8 games, in seven of those games they managed just 13 goals.
Tonight will mark the second time the Lightning and the Flyers face each other this season, and the second visit to Philly for the Lightning. There are two more matcups left for these two teams, the next time they meet will be February 1st in Tampa.
The Lightning took the first matchup by the score of 3-2, that game was Simon Gagne's first visit back to Philly after being traded to Tampa in the offseason. Gagne is nursing a sore neck and did not make the trip to Philly this time around.
Brian Boucher took the loss in net for the Flyers while Dan Ellis picked up the win. This could or should be(depending on the way you look at it) the game Boucher gets a spot start,his last start was on Oct 25 against the Blue Jackets in Columbus where he again picked up the loss.
Laviolette has stated that he wants to get as many points early on to take the pressure off later in the season. Sounds like Boosh may have to wait longer to see game action which may not happen on this Flyers team.
In The Nets
With Laviolette's thinking the way he is about early points I would expect him to start Sergei Bobrovsky ( 11-3-1) 2.07 GAA tonight.
He will need a break and it seems Laviolette is waiting for Leighton to get healthy and back with the team before he gets a rest. It is still early in the season and the Flyers will need both Bobrovsky and Leighton to share time to give each other breaks the rest of the way.
Tampa Bay played last night and Dan Ellis (5-4-2) 2.48 GAA got the start and the win.
For that reason Mike Smith (4-3) 3.63 GAA could get the call tonight for the Lightning. Mike Smith is 3-5 against the Flyers with a 3.00 GAA.
The Century Club
Tonight Flyers defensemen Chris Pronger and Braydon Coburn will/can respectively reach the century mark in different areas of the stat sheet.
Pronger will definitely have the easier of the two chances as he is going to play in his 100th game as a Flyer. Coburn needs just 1 point tonight to reach the 100th of his career.
Obviously the Flyers will have to be more disciplined tonight then they were on Monday in Montreal. Their special teams play have to capitalize on the opportunities they get whether that be on the power play or the penalty kill.
Too many times the Flyers often blow opportunities to steal momentum in the game where the opposing team either has the momentum or it is still up for grabs. Let's hope they can be more consistent on the power play tonight.
The Flyers will have to contain Steven Stamkos tonight , he has been able to find the net against the Flyers in short NHL career. He is also the leader in Goals 16 and points 30 for this team followed by Martin St. Louis at 21 pts.
Ryan Malone and Vincent LeCavalier have gotten off to slow starts recording 10 and 9 points respectively. The Flyers need to stick with these players and not let them have an easy path to the net.
Step Up Players
JVR, Coburn, Carter