Morning Skate: Red Wings at Flyers

Oh my god Smitty, look at his butt! - Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Game 53

7:00p ET, Wells Fargo Center

Philadelphia, PA

TV: Fox Sports Detroit

Radio: AM 1270

Flyers Blog: Broad Street Hockey

So, we meet again... For the third time... For the last time.

The Flyers are a team who aren't great, but aren't complete garbage either. They find themselves one point out of the final wild card spot in the East, which coincidentally is currently occupied by Detroit. They've lost 4 in a row and 7 of their last 8 games and will be fighting hard tonight because there are playoff implications involved. If the Wings win in regulation tonight, we hold on to the final wild card spot, but if a loss, regulation or otherwise, will allow Philly to supplant us. We need to beat Philly tonight, and we'll have to do it without Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk, who didn't make the trip with the team.

After costing themselves a valuable point against the Panthers, this Frankenstein team is going to have to learn from their mistakes and fast. I'm a little nervous about this game, but I'm pretty sure that's SOP by now. The good news is that we're on the road and the Wings have the 4th best road record in the Eastern Conference.

I think we should win this game. What do you think? Is that a good idea?


The Expected Lineup

Forwards

Gustav Nyquist Johan Franzen Justin Abdelkader
Tomas Jurco Riley Sheahan Tomas Tatar
Daniel Cleary Darren Helm Daniel Alfredsson
Drew Miller Luke Glendening Patrick Eaves

Defensemen

Niklas Kronwall Jonathan Ericsson
Kyle Quincey Danny DeKeyser
Brian Lashoff Brendan Smith

Goaltenders

Jimmy Howard
Jonas Gustavsson


Note: Jimmy may or may not start tonight, but he was activated off IR and Mrazek was sent back to Grand Rapids.

Scratches: Todd Bertuzzi, Jakub Kindl

Injuries: Pavel Datsyuk (lower body), Joakim Andersson (mystery spot), Cory Emmerton (finger), Henrik Zetterberg (upper body- probably back)

LTIR: Stephen Weiss (groin)



FLYERS THE MATCH-UP RED WINGS
25-22-6 (56 pts; 5th in Metro) Record 23-18-11 (57 pts; 5th in Atlantic)
2.62 (17th in NHL) Goals Per Game 2.54 (20th in NHL)
2.89 (22nd) Goals Against Per Game 2.62 (14th)
18.8% (14th) Power Play % 16.6% (22nd)
83.3% (10th) Penalty Kill % 84.3% (7thth)
Wayne Simmonds (17 goals) Goal Leader Henrik Zetterberg (16 goals)
Claude Giroux (47 points) Points Leader Henrik Zetterberg (44 points)


Opponent Outlook

Player to Fear: Claude Giroux is a very talented young player and laughs at everyone who poopoo'd on him for his slow start this season. He has 4 goals and 6 assists in his last 12 games. However, if you look at his last 11 games, he's only had points in every other game. He had a point in his last game, Saturday against Boston. Soooooo *Crosses Fingers *

X-Factor: Jakub Voracek, who is also on an every other game point streak for his last 11 games, and a point in his last game, Saturday against Boston. Has anyone confirmed that Voracek and Giroux are indeed different people?

Familiar Faces: Noooooope

Thumbs up (One Thing to Like About Philadelphia): It's not Pittsburgh.

Thumbs down (One Thing to Dislike About Philadelphia): Ray Emery is a goon.


Bullets of Knowledge

  • The Red Wings are 48-57-21-0 (W-L-T-OTL) all-time against the Flyers.

  • Last 10 games: Philadelphia 3-5-2. Detroit 5-4-1.

  • Gustavsson is 0-2-1 with a 3.27 GAA and .888 SV% in 3 career games against the Flyers. Howard is 1-2-0 with a 3.78 GAA and 0894 SV% in 3 games against the Flyers. Guys, your stats against Philly.... Woof.

Prediction: Nothing. Every time I make a prediction it jinxes the object of my prediction.

Let's Go Red Wings!!!
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