Flyers-Wild: Game 32 Preview

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

This game night takes on a different meaning. The Flyers are in the midst of a three-game road trip that continues on Saturday and will wrap up this weekend. But as the news was revealed of Oskar Lindblom's diagnosis with Ewing's sarcoma on Friday, it was something much bigger than anything that could happen on the ice.

With Lindblom certainly on their minds, the Flyers will get back on the ice for the first time since a 3-1 loss in Colorado, looking to get back to the win column. They take on the Minnesota Wild, a team that has been very good on home ice to the tune of an 8-1-3 record this season.

Game time is at 7 p.m.

Team Leaders

Philadelphia Flyers GP G A P Minnesota Wild GP G A P
Travis Konecny 30 11 17 28 Jason Zucker 32 12 11 23
Sean Couturier 31 8 15 23 Eric Staal 32 9 14 23
Jake Voracek 31 6 16 22 Zach Parise 32 12 6 18
Claude Giroux 31 10 12 22 Mats Zuccarello 28 7 11 18
Ivan Provorov  31 7 12 19 Ryan Suter 32 3 15 18
Player to Watch
13 Kevin Hayes 16 Jason Zucker
Last 5 Games: 1 G, 2 A, 3 P, -1 Last 5 Games: 3 G, 3 A, 6 P, +3
Last game was a struggle for Kevin Hayes and his line. They collectively struggled to generate chances and had difficulty on defense, where they have usually been reliable this season. Hayes was a minus-3 in the game. A bounce-back game could be in order for Hayes, who has gone four games without a goal.
Jason Zucker is tied for the lead in goals and points on the Wild and has always been a thorn in the side for the Flyers. In his career, Zucker has five goals in nine games against the Orange and Black. With three multi-point games in his last five, he's helping to drive the Minnesota offense. 
Projected Goalie Matchup
79 Carter Hart 32 Alex Stalock
20 GP, 10-6-3, 2.43 GAA, .908 SV% 17 GP, 8-4-2, 2.91 GAA, .906 SV%

The Flyers did not have a morning skate and have not announced a goalie for tonight, but the two netminders on the team will split action this weekend. It appears that Carter Hart will get the start in Minnesota on Saturday night. Hart was on the losing end of the 3-1 decision to Colorado, stopping 24 of 27 shots faced. The loss to Colorado snapped a personal four-game winning streak for Hart.

Alex Stalock has been leaned on lately with Devan Dubnyk battling an injury. He won three games in a row to close out November and start December, but did suffer the loss to Carolina in his last start last Saturday, allowing five goals on 39 shots.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Injuries: Oskar Lindblom, Travis Konecny, Michael Raffl, Nolan Patrick

Scratches: Robert Hagg

Left Wing Center Right Wing
28 Claude Giroux 14 Sean Couturier 93 Jake Voracek
21 Scott Laughton 13 Kevin Hayes 49 Joel Farabee
25 James van Riemsdyk 48 Morgan Frost 18 Tyler Pitlick
72 David Kase 24 Mikhail Vorobyev 44 Chris Stewart
9 Ivan Provorov 15 Matt Niskanen  
6 Travis Sanheim 61 Justin Braun  
53 Shayne Gostisbehere 5 Phil Myers  
79 Carter Hart 37 Brian Elliott  

Lineup Notes

Phil Myers is expected to be back in the lineup, which would likely bring Robert Hagg back out of the lineup. The forward group remains the same from the last game on Wednesday.

Wild Projected Lineup

Injuries: Devan Dubnyk, Jared Spurgeon, Mikko Koivu, Greg Pateryn

Scratches: Nick Seeler

Left Wing Center Right Wing
16 Jason Zucker 12 Eric Staal 36 Mats Zuccarello
11 Zach Parise 6 Ryan Donato 22 Kevin Fiala
18 Jordan Greenway 14 Joel Eriksson Ek 19 Luke Kunin
17 Marcus Foligno 49 Victor Rask 38 Ryan Hartman
20 Ryan Suter 24 Mathew Dumba  
21 Carson Soucy 25 Jonas Brodin  
77 Brad Hunt 61 Brennan Menell  
32 Alex Stalock 31 Kaapo Kahkonen  

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (19th), Wild (17th)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (5th), Wild (23rd)
  • Recent History vs. Wild
    • Jan. 14, 2019 – Flyers 7, Wild 4 (at PHI)
    • Feb. 12, 2019 – Flyers 5, Wild 4 (at MIN)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Wild
    • Jake Voracek – 23 GP, 3 G, 16 A, 19 P
    • Travis Sanheim – 4 GP, 0 G, 3 A, 3 P
    • Claude Giroux – 15 GP, 4 G, 6 A, 10 P
    • Carter Hart – 1 GP, 1-0-0, 4.00 GAA, .895 SV%

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