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Flyers-Sharks: Game 38 Preview

As the Flyers took the ice on Wednesday in St. Louis, you could tell midway through the third period that they hadn't played in nearly a week. Play in their own end was dreadful, and it led to a complete disintegration in the third stanza en route to a 6-3 loss.
 
Their road trip continues tonight at SAP Center against an ever-competitive San Jose Sharks squad, who will make a team pay for their mistakes. The Orange and Black are winless in their last three road contests, scoring just four goals, which gives them even more of a battle to fight against a team that has lost just four games on the home 'Shark Tank' ice this season.

Puck drop is set for 10 p.m.

Flyers Leaders GP G A P Sharks Leaders GP G A P
Jake Voracek 37 11 24 35 Brent Burns 35 14 20 34
Wayne Simmonds 37 17 14 31 Joe Pavelski 35 12 21 33
Claude Giroux 37 11 21 31 Joe Thornton 35 2 22 24
Brayden Schenn 34 10 13 23 Logan Couture 35 11 12 23
Travis Konecny 37 4 14 18 Patrick Marleau 35 9 4 13
 
Player to Watch
17 Wayne Simmonds 88 Brent Burns
Last 5 Games: 1 G, 1 A, 2 P, -3 Last 5 Games: 1 G, 5 A, 6 P, +6
 
Wayne Simmonds was productive in Wednesday night's game, with a goal and an assist. The Flyers' leading goal scorer has five goals and nine points in 24 games against the Sharks.
 
One of the Sharks' quirkier personalities, Brent Burns is a hard guy to miss on the ice, especially with that wizard-like beard of his. The Sharks' leading scorer has been on a tear with six points in his last five games, including the overtime-winner over the Ducks in their most recent game.
 
Goalie Matchup
35 Steve Mason 30 Aaron Dell
14-11-4, 2.78 GAA, .905 SV% 4-3-1, 2.16 GAA, .926 SV%

Steve Mason will return between the pipes for the Flyers tonight, after spotting five goals on 24 shots against the Blues. He is 6-9-3 all-time against the Sharks, with a 3.42 GAA and a .873 save percentage. 

Aaron Dell, who played for Dave Hakstol at the University of North Dakota, will start for the Sharks. He's enjoyed pedestrian success so far in his rookie season as the backup to Martin Jones.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Scratches: Roman Lyubimov, Travis Konecny, Radko Gudas, Michal Neuvirth, Matt Read, Mark Streit

Left Wing Center Right Wing
12 Michael Raffl 28 Claude Giroux 93 Jake Voracek
10 Brayden Schenn 14 Sean Couturier 17 Wayne Simmonds
58 Taylor Leier 25 Nick Cousins 22 Dale Weise
76 Chris VandeVelde 78 Pierre-Edouard Bellemare 27 Boyd Gordon
Defense    
9 Ivan Provorov 47 Andrew MacDonald  
15 Michael Del Zotto 23 Brandon Manning  
55 Nick Schultz 53 Shayne Gostisbehere  
Goalie    
35 Steve Mason    

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (8th, 9th on road), Sharks (19th, 5th at home)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (18th, 22nd on road), Sharks (8th, 18th at home) 
  • Recent History vs. Sharks:
    • Dec. 30, 2015 - Exactly a year ago today, the Flyers fell to the Sharks, 4-2, after a pair of Joe Pavelski goals in the third period. Claude Giroux and Sean Couturier scored for the Flyers, while Joe Thornton and Brent Burns recorded the Sharks' other tallies. Steve Mason stopped 29 pucks on 33 shots.
  • The Flyers have not won in San Jose since Feb. 3, 2014, and are winless in 18 of their last 19 games against the Sharks, dating back to the 2001-02 season.

Where to Watch
TV: CSN
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic

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