10 Storylines for the 2019-20 Flyers Season
Phillies Reportedly Move On From Chris Young as Pitching Coach

Flyers-Blackhawks: Game 1 Preview

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It is finally here. The Flyers open the 2019-20 regular season from Prague, Czech Republic as they take on the Chicago Blackhawks

It has been a long offseason for the Flyers and many new faces are around, none bigger than the man behind the bench in Alain Vigneault. With new players like Kevin Hayes, Matt Niskanen and Justin Braun all debuting with the Flyers and rookies Carsen Twarynski and Connor Bunnaman about make their NHL debut as well, it certainly is a new beginning for the Orange and Black.

Game time is at 2 p.m.

Team Leaders (2018-19 Statistics)

Philadelphia Flyers GP G A P Chicago Blackhawks GP G A P
Claude Giroux 82 22 63 85 Patrick Kane 81 44 66 110
Sean Couturier 80 33 43 76 Jonathan Toews 82 35 46 81
Jake Voracek 78 20 46 66 Alex DeBrincat 82 41 35 76
Travis Konecny 82 24 25 49 Erik Gustafsson 79 17 43 60
James van Riemsdyk 66 27 21 48 Dylan Strome 58 17 34 51
 
Player to Watch
13 Kevin Hayes     88 Patrick Kane
2018-19 Stats: 19 G, 36 A, 55 P 2018-19 Stats: 44 G, 66 A, 110 P
 
It's an important debut for Kevin Hayes. The forward acquired by the Flyers to bring stability and added depth to the center position will start by playing with Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek, looking to make an early impact.
 
The Blackhawks may have been one of the NHL's bottom-feeders last season, but Patrick Kane remains one of the top scoring threats in the game. Last season, he led the Blackhawks with 44 goals and 110 points.
 
Goalie Matchup (2018-19 Stats)
79 Carter Hart 50 Corey Crawford
31 GP, 16-13-1, 2.83 GAA, .917 SV% 39 GP, 14-18-5, 2.93 GAA, .908 SV%

Carter Hart looks to start his second NHL season off strong by getting the start in the season opener. Hart appeared in three preseason games and the exhibition in Switzerland. Before Monday's exhibition, Hart had stopped 56 of 57 shots faced.

Corey Crawford gets the first start for the Blackhawks this season after making 39 starts last season. Crawford has a 2-6-0 record against the Flyers in his career with a 2.79 GAA.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Injuries: Nolan Patrick, Andy Welinski

Left Wing Center Right Wing
28 Claude Giroux 13 Kevin Hayes 93 Jake Voracek
23 Oskar Lindblom 14 Sean Couturier 11 Travis Konecny
25 James van Riemsdyk 21 Scott Laughton 81 Carsen Twarynski
12 Michael Raffl 82 Connor Bunnaman 18 Tyler Pitlick
Defense    
9 Ivan Provorov 61 Justin Braun  
6 Travis Sanheim 15 Matt Niskanen  
8 Robert Hagg 53 Shayne Gostisbehere  
Goalie    
79 Carter Hart 37 Brian Elliott  

Lineup Notes

Plenty of new faces in the Flyers lineup with Kevin Hayes centering the "top" line with Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek. Carsen Twarynski will debut on the third line, Connor Bunnaman will center the fourth line and Tyler Pitlick will make his Flyers debut on the fourth line as well. Defensively, Justin Braun lines up with Ivan Provorov and Matt Niskanen with Travis Sanheim for their Flyers debuts.

Blackhawks Projected Lineup

Injuries: Connor Murphy, John Quenneville

Scratches: Calvin de Haan

Left Wing Center Right Wing
92 Alex Nylander 19 Jonathan Toews 88 Patrick Kane
12 Alex DeBrincat 17 Dylan Strome 65 Andrew Shaw
 20 Brandon Saad 64 David Kampf 8 Dominik Kubalik
15 Zack Smith 22 Ryan Carpenter  91 Drake Caggiula
Defense    
2 Duncan Keith 56 Erik Gustafsson  
6 Olli Maatta 7 Brent Seabrook  
68 Slater Koekkoek 39 Dennis Gilbert  
Goalie    
50 Corey Crawford 40 Robin Lehner  

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (23rd), Blackhawks (15th)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (26th), Blackhawks (31st) 
  • Recent History vs. Blackhawks
    • Nov. 10, 2018 - Flyers 4, Blackhawks 0 (at PHI)
    • March 21, 2019 - Flyers 3, Blackhawks 1 (at CHI)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Blackhawks
    • Claude Giroux - 16 GP, 5 G, 18 A, 23 P
    • Sean Couturier - 12 GP, 5 G, 6 A, 11 P
    • Jake Voracek - 30 GP, 6 G, 17 A, 23 P
    • Carter Hart - 1 GP, 1-0-0, 1.00 GAA, .976 SV%

Where to Watch
TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic/97.3 ESPN

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