Flyers-Blue Jackets: Game 42 Preview

2-17-15_FlyersvsBlueJackets_credKateFrese-3

(Kate Frese/Sports Talk Philly)

By Bill Minchin, Sports Talk Philly writer

The Philadelphia Flyers (21-15-5) look to make it back to back wins as they head to Ohio for a showdown with the division leading Columbus Blue Jackets (27-7-4) on Sunday night. This is the first of four meetings between the two teams and first of two in Columbus. The opening face-off is set for 6 p.m.

Columbus has lost it's last two games following a 16 game winning streak. Their 58 points leads the NHL. 

Flyers Leaders GP G A P Blue Jackets Leaders GP G A P
Jake Voracek 41 13 26 39 Cam Atkinson 38 19 20 39
Claude Giroux 41 10 24 34 Nick Foligno 36 13 21 34
Wayne Simmonds 41 17 15 32 Alexander Wennberg 38 8 26 34
Brayden Schenn 38 11 15 26 Brandon Saad 38 14 19 33
Travis Konecny 40 6 14 20 Sam Gagner 37 14 16 30
 
Player to Watch
11 Travis Konecny 89 Sam Gagner
Last 5 Games: 2 G, 2 A, 4 P, +2 Last 5 Games: 0 G, 3 A, 3 P, +3
 
Travis Konecny was one of the most noticeable Flyers on the ice yesterday afternoon. The rookie winger seemed to get scoring chances every time he touched the puck. Konecny will look to continue his strong play tonight.
 
Former Flyers winger Sam Gagner has seen a rebirth this season in Columbus. Gagner was never able to keep a spot in the lineup in his one season in Philadelphia. It has been the total opposite with the Blue Jackets. Gagner is a key contributor to the Jackets offense scoring 30 pts in 37 games so far this season.
 
Goalie Matchup
35 Steve Mason 72 Sergei Bobrovsky
14-13-5, 2.82 GAA, .903 SV% 25-6-2, 2.03 GAA, .930 SV%

Steve Mason got the day off yesterday as Michal Neuvirth returned to the lineup for the Flyers. Mason looks to get the start tonight. He will look to find the consistency he had in leading the Flyers to a 10 game win streak earlier this season.

Sergei Bobrovsky has been outstanding this season for Columbus. His 25 wins leads the NHL in that department and he is once again playing up to his Vezina Trophy level of play. The Flyers will have heir hands full trying to get a win against their former netminder.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Scratches: Nick Cousins, Brandon Manning, Mark Streit

Left Wing Center Right Wing
12 Michael Raffl 28 Claude Giroux 24 Matt Read
11 Travis Konecny 14 Sean Couturier 93 Jake Voracek
22 Dale Weise 10 Brayden Schenn 17 Wayne Simmonds
76 Chris VandeVelde 78 Pierre-Edouard Bellemare 27 Boyd Gordon
Defense    
3 Radko Gudas 15 Michael Del Zotto  
47 Andrew MacDonald 9 Ivan Provorov  
53 Shayne Gostisbehere 55 Nick Schultz  
Goalie    
35 Steve Mason    

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (9th, 10th on the road), Blue Jackets (1st, 1st at home)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (18th, 22nd on the road), Blue Jackets (15th, 15th at home) 
  • Recent History vs. Columbus 
    • Last season the Flyers went 1-1-2 versus the Jackets losing both games in Columbus and splitting the two games in Philadelphia
    • The Flyers have lost each of the last 8 games played in Columbus

Where to Watch
TV: CSN
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic