Two weeks ago, I, along with many other fans, were hoping the Flyers never got to this point, but here we are. At that time, the Flyers had a double-digit lead over the last playoff spot and looked like they would almost certainly finish in a division spot.
Now, with the season winding down, the Flyers have found themselves in a must-win game against a Blue Jackets team that has been absolutely surging as of late.
WATCH / LISTEN / FACE-OFF:
LISTEN: 97.5 The Fanatic
PUCK DROP: 7:00 P.M.
LINE COMBINATIONS: Courtesy of Daily Faceoff
Philadelphia: Flyers Line Combinations
The Flyers will be keeping things the same as they did against Vegas with the following lines.
Claude Giroux – Sean Couturier – Travis Konecny
Oskar Lindblom – Nolan Patrick – Jake Voracek
Michael Raffl – Valtteri Filppula – Wayne Simmonds
Jori Lehtera – Scott Laughton – Matt Read
Ivan Provorov – Shayne Gostisbehere
Travis Sanheim – Andrew MacDonald
Brandon Manning – Radko Gudas
Columbus: Blue Jackets Line Combinations
The Jackets have been surging as of late after some deadline moves that helped to improve the team.
Artemi Panarin – Pierre-Luc Dubois – Cam Atkinson
Sonny Milano – Nick Foligno – Oliver Bjorkstrand
Boone Jenner – Alexander Wennberg – Josh Anderson
Matt Calvert – Mark Letestu – Brandon Dubinsky
Zach Werenski – Seth Jones
Jack Johnson – Markus Nutivaara
Ian Cole – David Savard
THREE STORYLINES TO WATCH
- Dave Hakstol’s decisions late in the game are becoming an increased reason for concern. He decided to gamble and not shorten his bench late against the Knights and that came back to hurt the Flyers. Vegas scored late in the game on a goal that stemmed from Filppula losing a relatively simple board battle. That can’t happen if the Flyers want any chance at making the playoffs.
- Travis Sanheim has looked nothing short of excellent since he came back up from Lehigh Valley. He hasn’t yet found the scoresheet, but he is a plus-1 and Dave Hakstol increased his icetime against the Knights. Look for that trend to continue into tonight.
- The Flyers need find their groove again on the powerplay. The team is operating at 12% in the month of March and just seems to have no flow. The second unit finally had a few good shifts against the Knights but that trend will need to continue if the Flyers want to move up in the standings.