The All-Star break is over and now the stretch run begins. The Flyers return to the ice on Tuesday night to face the Montreal Canadiens in their first of several crucial games in the month of February.
For the Flyers, this will be the make or break month, the chance to either gain some ground and pass opponents in the standings or ultimately fall out of the race. The fate rests in their hands and the way they play upon returning from another break.
That can start on Tuesday. The Flyers have four teams ahead of them in the standings still outside of the playoff picture. The Canadiens sit two points in front and the Flyers have three games in hand. A win in regulation will vault the Flyers over the Canadiens, who are just 2-7-1 since their win in the Winter Classic on New Year's Day.
The Flyers and Canadiens faceoff starting at 7 p.m. from Wells Fargo Center.
Steve Mason makes his first start since Jan. 21 in Pittsburgh where he suffered a 4-3 loss. Mason battled a lingering injury leading into the All-Star break, but will return between the pipes for the Flyers with Michal Neuvirth also battling an injury that forced him to leave Monday's practice. Mason's last win came on Jan. 13 against Boston.
It's been a struggle of late for Mike Condon as well. He earned wins in back-to-back starts on Jan. 1 and 6, but since then has lost five of six games, allowing three goals or more in three of his last four starts.
Flyers Projected Lineup
Scratches: Jordan Weal, R.J. Umberger, Brandon Manning, Michal Neuvirth
The Flyers only injury of note is to Michal Neuvirth, out with a lower-body injury. Anthony Stolarz is on the bench in the backup role. R.J. Umberger exits the lineup as a healthy scratch after a 50-game goalless drought. Sam Gagner remains in the lineup while Sean Couturier makes his return. Both will play on the second line with Brayden Schenn while Michael Raffl, who previously was their linemate, drops to the fourth line with Matt Read and Scott Laughton. Evgeny Medvedev also comes back into the lineup for Brandon Manning.
Where to WatchTV: CSNRadio: 97.5 The Fanatic
Kevin Durso is managing editor for Flyerdelphia. Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.