Oilers (2-4, 4 PTS) @ Flyers (4-3, 8 PTS)
For the first time since February, the Flyers will face off against Conor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers. McDavid and Co. are headed into South Philly with an overtime win against Chicago in their back pocket. On the other hand, the Flyers are looking to rebound and get back on track after being shutout by Nashville Thursday night.
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LINE COMBINATIONS (Courtesy of Daily Faceoff)
Philadelphia: Flyers Line Combinations
Coach Dave Hakstol is rolling with the same lines from Thursday night’s loss, besides Jordan Weal re-entering the lineup for Jori Lehtera. Weal was a game-time scratch on Thursday with an upper-body injury, but it seems that his injury will only hold him out for one game as he practiced with the rest of the team yesterday. Matt Read was recalled on Tuesday, so there is a chance we could see him make his way into the lineup for the first time this season as both Wayne Simmonds and Taylor Leier were absent from yesterday’s practice. According to Dave Isaac, both players were given maintenance days, so Read may just be a healthy scratch.
Giroux – Couturier – Voracek
Weal – Filppula – Simmonds
Weise – Patrick – Konecny
Leier – Laughton – Raffl
Provorov – MacDonald
Gostisbehere – Hagg
Sanheim – Gudas
Brian Elliot will get the start this afternoon for Philadelphia, his first appearance since the victory over Washington exactly a week ago. In the 8-2 win, Elliot stopped 21 of 23 shots On the season, Elliot is 3-1 with a 3.25 GAA and a .884 SV%.
Edmonton: Oilers Line Combinations
The Oilers were hoping to be boosted from the return of Leon Draisaitl, who’s been out with a concussion since October 9th. Despite practicing yesterday, the 21 year-old is still suffering from concussion symptoms and will not suit up today. Oilers coach Todd McLellan is unlikely to shuffle his lines from the win on Thursday.
Maroon – McDavid – Yamamoto
Luic – Nugent-Hopkins – Strome
Jokinen – Malone – Kassian
Pakarinen – Letestu – Slepyshev
Klefbom – Larsson
Russell – Auvitu
Nurse – Gryba
Cam Talbot will be making his 6th start of the season for the Oilers in the early season. Talbot has started every game this season besides one, and he holds a 2-3 record with a 3.17 GAA and a .901 SV%. In the win vs Chicago, Talbot turned away 30 of the 31 shots he faced in the 2-1 victory.
THREE STORYLINES TO WATCH
How are the Flyers going to stop Conor McDavid? It’ll be interesting to see how the Flyers try to match up vs the young captain. One advantage Dave Hakstol has is that he has last change with the game being at home. Does he try to match power with power by placing Sean Couturier and the first line against him? Or does he throw out Scott Laughton and the 4th line in attempts to shut him down? We’ll have to wait until game time to see.
Brian Elliot is very familiar with the Edmonton Oilers, the 37 year-old spent last season in Calgary and matched up with Edmonton 4 times. For his career, he owns a 9-6-1 record with a 2.59 GAA and a .898 SV% in 16 career games. This familiarity with the Western Conference team hopefully leads to a strong start in net this afternoon.
Edmonton has the league’s worst penalty kill, only killing off 74.1% of the power plays they’ve faced. The Flyers are 12th in the league on the power play, scoring on a 22.6% clip. If Philadelphia wants to get a result of the game, it will be vital for the Flyers to take advantage of the extra man when they have the opportunity vs a struggling unit.