As the calendar turns to April, less than two weeks remain in the Flyers season. Just eight games separate the Orange and Black from another disappointing season, but one that in recent weeks has seen the dawn of potential change in the organization.
Following the trade deadline and the firing of Chuck Fletcher, the Flyers have turned things around into a bit of a hot streak, with points in seven straight games and a 5-0-2 record in that time. While the results at the end of the day are certainly positive, there can be a bit of fool’s gold involved when the games hold little to no stakes in the playoff picture and teams can play more freely from the pressures of the playoff push.
The first game of that seven-game streak for the Flyers came against the Buffalo Sabres, who are back in Philly on Saturday night.
Game time is 7 p.m.
Noah Cates has points in five of the last six games, including five assists in that time. Cates also scored a goal against Buffalo on Jan. 9.
Jeff Skinner scored the game-winning goal in overtime on Friday night and has goals in three of the last five games for Buffalo. He also has outstanding career numbers against the Flyers, with 17 goals and 34 points in 48 career games.
Felix Sandstrom gets the start for the Flyers. Sandstrom allowed five goals on 46 shots in the team’s overtime loss in Ottawa on Thursday, but helped keep them in a close game despite a heavy disparity in shots. This is Sandstrom’s fifth start this month.
Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen is expected to start for Buffalo. Luukkonen picked up the win in his last start against the Devils on March 24, making 27 saves on 31 shots. That snapped a personal five-game losing streak.
Flyers Scratches: Sean Couturier (injury), Carter Hart (injury), Kieffer Bellows (healthy), Tanner Laczynski (healthy)
Sabres Scratches: Tage Thompson (injury), Craig Anderson (injury), Jacob Bryson (healthy), Devon Levi (healthy), Vinnie Hinostroza (healthy), Kale Clague (healthy)