Flyers-Penguins: Game 70 Preview

The battle of PA resumes in Philly
(Photo courtesy of Kate Frese/Kate Frese Photography)
The Philadelphia Flyers (34-23-12) look to make it three in a row on Saturday afternoon when they welcome Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins (38-24-8) to the Wells Fargo Center. Game time is 1:00.
This is the second of four meetings between the two clubs and first of two in Philadelphia. Pittsburgh snapped a long losing streak to the Flyers back in January with a 4-3 victory in Pittsburgh.
So far this week, Philadelphia has defeat Detroit at home and Chicago on the road picking up four crucial points in the standings. The Flyers are now just a single point behind the Red Wings for the final playoff spot with two games in hand. 

Flyers Leaders GP G A P Penguins Leaders GP G A P
Claude Giroux 66 18 41 59 Sidney Crosby 69 31 41 72
Wayne Simmonds 69 25 24 49 Evgeni Malkin 57 27 31 58
Jakub Voracek 60 10 38 48 Kris Letang 60 13 40 53
Brayden Schenn 66 24 24 48 Phil Kessel 70 21 26 47
Shayne Gostisbehere 50 16 23 39 Patric Hornqvist 70 18 26 44
Player to Watch
93 Jakub Voracek 87 Sidney Crosby
Last 5 Games: 0G, 0A, 0Pts, Even Last 5 Games: 3G, 4A, 7Pts, +2
Jakub Voracek looks to return to the lineup this afternoon after missing the last nine games with a lower body injury. It will be interesting to see how much ice time he will get and also what line he will play on. The one thing we do know is that Voracek instantly makes the top power play better. WIth Pittsburgh boasting the fourth best road penalty kill in the NHL, the top unit will need to be operating smoothly.  
After a relatively slow start to the season, Sidney Crosby is once again firing on all cylinders. Te Penguins captain has climbed all the way to fifth in the league in scoring. His 31 goals are tops on the team as are his 41 assists. Typically the Claude Giroux line is tasked with playing against Crosby but, with Evgeni Malkin out, it may be the Sean Couturier line that gets that responsibilty.
Goalie Matchup
30 Michal Neuvirth 29 Marc-Andre Fleury
17-18-4, 2.28 GAA, .925 SV% 30-16-6, 2.32 GAA, .922 SV%

Michal Neuvirth looks to make his second straight start for the Flyers. Neuvirth was simply outstanding in Wednesday night's 3-2 win in Chicago. Neuvirth has been excellent each and every time he has been called upon this season by Dave Hakstol

Marc-Andre Fleury will get the nod for Pittsburgh. Fleury is having another fantastic season for the Penguins. He has 30 wins yet again with solid extended numbers as well. He has played some outstanding games against Philadelphia and also some really bad ones. Which Fleury shows up may end being the deciding factor this afternoon.

Flyers Projected Lineup

Scratches: Chris VandeVelde, R.J. Umberger, Evgeny Medvedev, Jordan Weal, Micheal Del Zotto

Left Wing Center Right Wing
10 Brayden Schenn 28 Claude Giroux 17 Wayne Simmonds
12 Michael Raffl 14 Sean Couturier 89 Sam Gagner
21 Scott Laughton 78 Pierre-Edouard Bellemare 25 Ryan White
93 Jakub Voracek 52 Nick Cousins 24 Matt Read
47 Andrew MacDonald 53 Shayne Gostisbehere  
32 Mark Streit 55 Nick Schultz  
23 Brandon Manning 3 Radko Gudas  
30 Michal Neuvirth    

Jakub Voracek will be a game time decision for the Flyers. If he cannot go, expect R.J. Umberger to get the call with Chris VandeVelde serving the first of a two game suspension for his elbow to Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews.

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (16th, 26th at home), Penguins(18th, 20th on road) 
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (22nd, 21st at home), Penguins (7th, 4th on road)
  • The Flyers are 150-94-30 all time against the Penguins including a 95-33-8 record at home.
  • The Flyers have won the last three home games against the Penguins

Where to Watch
TV: CSN Philly
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic

Bill Minchin is a contributing writer for Flyerdelphia. Follow Bill on Twitter @wtfd103074.

Go to top button