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Flyers-Capitals: Game 50 Preview

10-14-2017_FlyersvsCaps_edit2_credKateFrese-57

(Kate Frese/SB Nation)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It's time for the stretch run. While the Flyers still have 33 games on the schedule and a lot of points are still up for grabs, those games will all take place in just over two months, so it is very much a sprint to the finish.

Many of these games will be against division opponents, including the first, as the Flyers take on the Washington Capitals on Wednesday night to open up their post-All-Star break schedule.

Game time is set for 8 p.m.

Team Leaders

Philadelphia Flyers GP G A P Washington Capitals GP G A P
Claude Giroux 49 14 43 57 Alex Ovechkin 49 30 23 53
Jake Voracek 49 9 47 56 Evgeny Kuznetsov 49 13 32 45
Sean Couturier 49 26 23 49 John Carlson 49 7 31 38
Shayne Gostisbehere 45 9 24 33 Nicklas Backstrom 48 10 28 38
Wayne Simmonds 49 16 13 29 T.J. Oshie 43 11 18 29
 
Player to Watch
11 Travis Konecny 8 Alex Ovechkin
Last 5 Games: 4 G, 2 A, 6 P, +4 Last 5 Games: 3 G, 4 A, 7 P, +1
 
Travis Konecny has goals in four straight games and provided the only tally for the Orange and Black in last Thursday's game. He's been the hottest Flyer of late, and it will be worth watching to see if that hot streak playing alongside Sean Couturier and Claude Giroux carried over to the other side of the All-Star break.
 
Just another typical year for Alex Ovechkin. He's hit the 30-goal mark before the All-Star break, which has him on pace for another 50-goal season easily. He also has been picking up the points lately with seven in the last five games. And as always, he's lethal on the power play from the left circle.
 
Goalie Matchup
30 Michal Neuvirth 70 Braden Holtby
5-6-1, 2.46 GAA, .918 SV% 25-9-2, 2.66 GAA, .917 SV%

After two really solid wins, Michal Neuvirth was basically left out to dry against the Tampa Bay Lightning last Thursday, allowing five goals in the loss. With Brian Elliott on IR, at least for now, the Flyers will likely have to lean on Neuvirth through this week.

It's been another solid season for Braden Holtby, who is up to 25 wins on the season and was at the All-Star Game in Tampa this past weekend. The Flyers did manage to solve him twice 10 days ago in a 2-1 overtime win, so they have managed to defeat him once before, but as one of the league's elite goalies, Holtby can definitely be a game-changer.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Injuries: Brian Elliott

Scratches: Dale Weise, Taylor Leier, Mark Alt

Left Wing Center Right Wing
28 Claude Giroux 14 Sean Couturier 11 Travis Konecny
93 Jake Voracek 19 Nolan Patrick 17 Wayne Simmonds
40 Jordan Weal 51 Valtteri Filppula 12 Michael Raffl
56 Tyrell Goulbourne 21 Scott Laughton 15 Jori Lehtera
Defense    
9 Ivan Provorov 53 Shayne Gostisbehere  
8 Robert Hagg 47 Andrew MacDonald  
23 Brandon Manning 3 Radko Gudas  
Goalie    
30 Michal Neuvirth    

Lineup Notes

The Flyers moved Nolan Patrick up to the second line with Jake Voracek and Wayne Simmonds on the wings. Valtteri Filppula drops to the third line with Jordan Weal and Michael Raffl. The rest of the Flyers lineup remains the same.

Capitals Projected Lineup

Scratches: Chandler Stephenson, Nathan Walker, Taylor Chorney

Left Wing Center Right Wing
8 Alex Ovechkin 92 Evgeni Kuznetsov 43 Tom Wilson
65 Andre Burakovsky 19 Nicklas Backstrom 77 T.J. Oshie
10 Brett Connolly 20 Lars Eller 13 Jakub Vrana
39 Alex Chiasson 83 Jay Beagle 25 Devante Smith-Pelly
Defense    
29 Christian Djoos 74 John Carlson  
2 Matt Niskanen 9 Dmirty Orlov  
44 Brooks Orpik 22 Madison Bowey  
Goalie    
70 Braden Holtby    

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (9th, 4th on road), Capitals (T-14th, 15th at home)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (28th, 22nd on road), Capitals (18th, 18th at home) 
  • Recent History vs. Capitals
    • Oct. 14, 2017 - Flyers 8, Capitals 2 (at PHI)
    • Jan. 21, 2018 - Flyers 2, Capitals 1 (OT) (at WSH)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Capitals
    • Claude Giroux - 35 GP, 18 G, 18 A, 36 P
    • Jake Voracek - 31 GP, 11 G, 11 A, 22 P
    • Shayne Gostisbehere - 9 GP, 0 G, 6 A, 6 P
    • Michal Neuvirth - 3 GP, 1-1-0, 3.16 GAA

Where to Watch
TV: NBCSN
Radio: 93.3 WMMR

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