Flyers-Panthers: Game 7 Preview

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

John Tortorella made his message clear on Sunday, at least to those watching the Flyers face the Sharks. Down 2-0 in the third period against a team with only one win on the season, Tortorella kept Kevin Hayes and Travis Konecny on the bench for the entire third period. That was in addition to an injury to James van Riemsdyk, a broken finger that will now require surgery.

With injuries piling up, the Flyers are getting some relief in that department. Owen Tippett returns to the lineup after suffering an injury in the season-opener, and Rasmus Ristolainen makes his season debut on Thursday night when the Flyers host the Florida Panthers.

Game time is at 7 p.m.

Team Leaders

Philadelphia FlyersGPGAPFlorida PanthersGPGAP
Kevin Hayes6178Matthew Tkachuk7459
Travis Konecny6426Eetu Luostarinen7336
James van Riemsdyk6235Colin White7246
Tony DeAngelo6145Gustav Forsling7145
Ivan Provorov6055Sam Bennett7134

Noah Cates is being shifted back to the wing in hopes of activating more offense. His only production this season is the game-winning goal scored in Tampa Bay last Tuesday.

Matthew Tkachuk continues to be off to a strong start in Florida. He was held without a point against the Islanders on Sunday, snapping a five-game points streak to start the season. He scored in Florida’s last game on Tuesday against the Chicago Blackhawks. Last Wednesday, Tkachuk had two assists in the Panthers’ win over the Flyers.

Carter Hart gets back in goal for Thursday’s game. He is off to an outstanding start this season with wins in all four games played. His last start last Saturday in Nashville was his best this season, making 31 saves on 32 shots.

Sergei Bobrovsky gets back in goal for the Panthers. Bobrovsky has been on the hook for two losses in a row, falling in overtime to the Lightning last Friday and allowing three goals to the Blackhawks on Tuesday. His last win came last Wednesday against the Flyers, making 30 saves on 33 shots.

Projected Lineups

Flyers Scratches: Cam Atkinson (injury), James van Riemsdyk (injury), Tanner Laczynski (personal)

Panthers Scratches: Anthony Duclair (injury), Aaron Ekblad (injury), Lukas Carlsson (healthy), Nick Cousins (healthy)

Lineup Notes

  • Flyers: With James van Riemsdyk out, Owen Tippett‘s return is a direct swap in the lineup. Tanner Laczynski will also miss Thursday’s game to a personal situation, so Rasmus Ristolainen‘s return does not require a defenseman to exit the lineup. The Flyers will use seven defensemen.
  • Panthers: Eric Staal makes his season debut for the Panthers. Nick Cousins will come out of the lineup. No other changes are expected.

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (17th), Panthers (30th)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (20th), Panthers (21st)
  • Recent History vs. Panthers
    • Oct. 19, 2022 – Panthers 4, Flyers 3 (at FLA)
    • March 10, 2022 – Panthers 6, Flyers 3 (at FLA)
    • Nov. 24, 2021 – Panthers 2, Flyers 1 (F/OT) (at FLA)
    • Oct. 23, 2021 – Panthers 4, Flyers 2 (at PHI)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Panthers 
    • Kevin Hayes: 19 GP, 4 G, 7 A, 11 P
    • Travis Konecny: 15 GP, 3 G, 7 A, 10 P
    • Tony DeAngelo: 10 GP, 2 G, 4 A, 6 P
    • Travis Sanheim: 11 GP, 2 G, 2 A, 4 P
    • Carter Hart: 6 GP, 2-4-0, 3.12 GAA, .905 SV%
    • Felix Sandstrom: 1 GP, 0-1-0, 4.32 GAA, .889 SV%

Where to Watch
TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Radio: Flyers Broadcast Network