Wells Fargo Center to Feature 1st Kinetic 4K Scoreboard in 2019
Around the NHL: Coaching Change Made, Matthews Paid, A Couple Metro Trades

Flyers-Penguins: Game 56 Preview

4-22-2018_FlyersvsPens_1st_playoffs_firstround_credKateFrese-8

(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

Since Jan. 3, the Flyers deficit in the standings to the cross-state rival Pittsburgh Penguins has dropped from 18 points to just six. The two teams meet three more times, starting with a game at Wells Fargo Center on Monday.

In the time since the start of 2019, the Flyers have a 10-5-2 record, including a 10-1-1 record in their last 12 games. The Penguins have a 7-8-1 record, including a 4-7-1 record in their last 12 games.

In a preview of the Stadium Series game set to take place at Lincoln Financial Field in less than two weeks on Feb. 23, there is certainly a lot at stake for both teams regarding the playoff chase on Monday.

Game time is at 7 p.m.

Team Leaders

Philadelphia Flyers GP G A P Pittsburgh Penguins GP G A P
Claude Giroux 55 16 42 58 Sidney Crosby 52 23 39 62
Sean Couturier 53 23 25 48 Phil Kessel 55 21 36 57
Jake Voracek 55 13 34 47 Evgeni Malkin 50 14 41 55
Travis Konecny 55 15 18 33 Jake Guentzel 55 26 25 51
James van Riemsdyk 39 13 13 26 Kris Letang 53 12 34 46
 
Player to Watch
14 Sean Couturier 87 Sidney Crosby
Last 5 Games: 4 G, 4 A, 8 P, +6 Last 5 Games: 1 G, 3 A, 4 P, -4
 
There's not a hotter player on the Flyers than Sean Couturier. He's got eight points in the last five games, a four-game goal streak. And don't forget that the last time the Penguins played in Wells Fargo Center in Game 6 of the first round of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Couturier had a hat trick while playing with a torn MCL.
 
It feels like every time the Penguins face the Flyers, Sidney Crosby is in the middle of everything. In his last three games, Crosby has just one assist, but the all-world player can take over a game at any time.
 
Goalie Matchup
79 Carter Hart 30 Matt Murray
17 GP, 11-5-1, 2.45 GAA, .926 SV% 26 GP, 15-9-1, 2.97 GAA, .909 SV%

History is on the line for Carter Hart on Monday. With a win, he would become the first goalie in NHL history to have a nine-game winning streak before his 21st birthday. A nine-game streak would also tie the Flyers rookie record. This is Hart's first meeting against the Penguins.

Matt Murray makes his first start in three games after missing Thursday's game with an injury and serving as backup on Saturday. Murray suffered the loss in the last two games, allowing three goals to the Hurricanes on Feb. 5 and three goals to the Maple Leafs on Feb. 2.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Injuries: Michal Neuvirth, Brian Elliott

Scratches: Phil Myers, Justin Bailey

Left Wing Center Right Wing
25 James van Riemsdyk 28 Claude Giroux 11 Travis Konecny
23 Oskar Lindblom 14 Sean Couturier 93 Jake Voracek
21 Scott Laughton 19 Nolan Patrick 17 Wayne Simmonds
44 Phil Varone 24 Mikhail Vorobyev 12 Michael Raffl
Defense    
9 Ivan Provorov 6 Travis Sanheim  
53 Shayne Gostisbehere 47 Andrew MacDonald  
8 Robert Hagg 3 Radko Gudas  
Goalie    
79 Carter Hart    

Lineup Notes

The Flyers lineup will remain the same for Monday. New arrivals Phil Myers and Justin Bailey are going to go through a few practices before entering the lineup, interim head coach Scott Gordon said.

Penguins Projected Lineup

Injuries: Justin Schultz, Zach Aston-Reese

Scratches: Teddy Blueger, Chad Ruhwedel

Left Wing Center Right Wing
59 Jake Guentzel 87 Sidney Crosby 17 Bryan Rust
27 Nick Bjugstad  71 Evgeni Malkin 81 Phil Kessel
 14 Tanner Pearson 19 Jared McCann 12 Dominik Simon
10 Garrett Wilson 7 Matt Cullen  72 Patric Hornqvist
Defense    
28 Marcus Pettersson 58 Kris Letang  
8 Brian Dumoulin 73 Jack Johnson  
3 Olli Maatta 50 Juuso Riikola  
Goalie    
30 Matt Murray    

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (24th, 17th at home), Penguins (7th, 1st on road)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (T-27th, 23rd at home), Penguins (T-9th, 1st on road) 
  • Recent History vs. Penguins
    • Nov. 27, 2017 - Penguins 5, Flyers 4 (F/OT) (at PIT)
    • Jan. 2, 2018 - Penguins 5, Flyers 1 (at PHI)
    • March 7, 2018 - Penguins 5, Flyers 2 (at PHI)
    • March 25, 2018 - Penguins 5, Flyers 4 (F/OT) (at PIT)
    • Stanley Cup Playoffs - Round 1
      • Game 1 - Penguins 7, Flyers 0 (at PIT)
      • Game 2 - Flyers 5, Penguins 1 (at PIT)
      • Game 3 - Penguins 5, Flyers 1 (at PHI)
      • Game 4 - Penguins 5, Flyers 0 (at PHI)
      • Game 5 - Flyers 4, Penguins 2 (at PIT)
      • Game 6 - Penguins 8, Flyers 5 (at PHI)
    • Dec. 1, 2018 - Flyers 4, Penguins 2 (at PIT)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Penguins
    • Claude Giroux - 45 GP, 15 G, 31 A, 46 P
    • Jake Voracek - 37 GP, 19 G, 18 A, 37 P
    • Shayne Gostisbehere - 13 GP, 3 G, 9 A, 12 P
    • Wayne Simmonds - 33 GP, 13 G, 11 A, 24 P
  • Milestone Watch
    • Radko Gudas needs two points to reach 100 for his career.

Where to Watch
TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia/NBCSN
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)