Flyers vs. Islanders: Game 79 Preview

Philadelphia Flyers right wing Travis Konecny (11) picks up loose puck away from New York Islanders center Bo Horvat (14) during the first period at Wells Fargo Center.
Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Flyers have spent the week on the road for their final extended road trip of the 2022-23 season. A four-game trip precedes the team’s final three games of the season, two of which will be on home ice. 

On Saturday, the fourth and final game of the road trip takes place, as the Flyers face off against a team that needs every win they can get to stay in the playoff picture. Less than a week remains on the 2022-23 regular season, and the New York Islanders hold the final wildcard spot in the East by a one-point margin.

Game time is 7:30 p.m.

Team Leaders

Philadelphia FlyersGPGAPNew York Islanders GPGAP
Travis Konecny56292756Brock Nelson79333972
Kevin Hayes77183654Bo Horvat76382967
Morgan Frost77192443Mathew Barzal58143751
Owen Tippett73232043Anders Lee79272249
Scott Laughton74182442Noah Dobson75133144

Players to Watch

After scoring at will during the seven-game homestand, goals have been hard to come by of late for the Flyers, with just eight in the first four games of April. That has been felt for Owen Tippett, who since scoring a hat trick on March 17 has just two goals and two assists in the last nine games, despite continuing to generate scoring chances. 

Brock Nelson has consistently been at the top of the Islanders team leaders in points. After a bit of a scoring slump – two goals and two assists in his previous eight games – he broke out against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday with a goal and two assists. Nelson has a goal and two assists in the three previous meetings against the Flyers this season.

Goalie Matchup

Carter Hart gets the start for the Flyers. Hart returned to action on Thursday night in Dallas, allowing four goals on 30 shots in the loss. Hart had won his previous four starts prior to injury. Hart has faced the Islanders twice this season, allowing two goals on 30 shots in a loss on Feb. 6 and making 23 saves on 24 shots in a win on Nov. 29.

Ilya Sorokin is expected to start for the Islanders. Sorokin won his last start, making 30 saves on 31 shots against the Lightning on Thursday. Sorokin took a loss against the Flyers on Nov. 29, making 30 saves on 32 shots. 

Projected Lineups

Flyers Lines

Flyers Scratches: Sean Couturier (injury), Tony DeAngelo (healthy)

Islanders Lines

Islanders Scratches: Mathew Barzal (injury), Alexander Romanov (injury), Oliver Wahlstrom (injury), Josh Bailey (healthy), Ross Johnston (healthy), Parker Wotherspoon (healthy)

Lineup Notes

  • Flyers: Justin Braun comes back into the lineup after Ronnie Attard was sent down to the Phantoms on Friday.
  • Islanders: No changes are expected to the Islanders lineup.

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (32nd), Islanders (30th)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (27th), Islanders (8th)
  • Recent History vs. Islanders
    • Feb. 6, 2023 – Islanders 2, Flyers 1 (at PHI)
    • Nov. 29, 2022 – Flyers 3, Islanders 1 (at PHI)
    • Nov. 26, 2022 – Islanders 5, Flyers 2 (at NYI)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Islanders
    • Kevin Hayes: 36 GP, 12 G, 7 A, 19 P
    • James van Riemsdyk: 50 GP, 12 G, 23 A, 35 P
    • Travis Konecny: 26 GP, 8 G, 8 A, 16 P
    • Scott Laughton: 28 GP, 3 G, 13 A, 16 P
    • Carter Hart: 11 GP, 4-4-3, 2.90 GAA, .895 SV%
    • Felix Sandstrom: 1 GP, 0-1-0, 5.01 GAA, .783 SV%
  • Milestone Watch
    • Carter Hart will play in his 200th career game tonight.
    • James van Riemsdyk needs one goal to reach 300 for his career.
    • Justin Braun needs one point to reach 200 for his career.
    • Scott Laughton needs two points to reach 200 for his career.
    • Tony DeAngelo needs two points to reach 200 for his career.
    • Nick Deslauriers needs three points to reach 100 for his career.

Where to Watch

  • TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
  • Radio: Flyers Broadcast Network
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