The Flyers are looking to close out a three-game homestand on a high after a decisive 3-1 win over the Blackhawks on Thursday.
Brian Elliott will start in goal for Philadelphia after impressing in his last two outings. This is the start of a home-and-home series between the Flyers and Wild — Philadelphia’s first home-and-home series since the 2015-16 season.
The Flyers have swept the season series in each of the last two seasons against Minnesota and will be going for their sixth straight win over the Wild tonight.
WATCH / LISTEN / LIVE
Radio: 93.3 WMMR
Puck Drop: 7:00 PM
LINE COMBINATIONS: (Courtesy of Daily Faceoff)
Philadelphia: Flyers Line Combinations
Nolan Patrick joined the optional skate this morning. According to Dave Isaac of the Courier Post, Patrick says he’s feeling better, but it’s up to the coaching and training staffs when he can do more.
The top line combined for seven points in Thursday’s win over Chicago, while Elliott’s 38 saves highlighted his best showing in a Flyers’ uniform to date. The Flyers have one of hottest lines in the league right now and they will look to keep it rolling against the Wild. Elliott will get another chance to make his mark on the bid for the starting gig. He was excellent in each of his previous two starts — both against Chicago.
Giroux – Couturier – Voracek
Konecny- Filppula – Simmonds
Weal – Lehtera – Weise
Leier – Laughton – Raffl
Provorov – Hagg
Gostisbehere – Manning
Sanheim – Gudas
Minnesota: Wild Line Combinations
Key goal-scorers Zach Parise (back) and Charlie Coyle (fractured right fibula) remain out for the Wild, while Kyle Quincey is expected to be a healthy scratch.
Jason Zucker has scored the Wild’s past five goals, while Eric Staal has four points in his last three games. Devan Dubnyk is expected to get the start in goal.
Niederreiter – Staal – Zucker
Ennis – Koivu – Granlund
Winnik – Eriksson Ek – Kunin
Foligno – Cullen – Stewart
Suter – Spurgeon
Brodin – Dumba
Olofsson – Reilly
Three Storylines to watch
1. The battle of the top lines. The Flyers’ top line was responsible for all the offense in the victory over Chicago, while Zucker has scored all five of the Wild’s goals in their last two outings. Niederreiter has made an impact since returning from injury and both team’s will be looking to their big guns Saturday evening at the Wells Fargo Center.
2. Brian Elliott. He made 30-plus saves in each of his last two outings and will look to take grasp of the starting role with a strong showing against the Wild. Minnesota sits near the middle-of-the-pack in terms of offense, but Elliott will need to have an answer for the streaking Zucker and company. It’s one thing to steal a game, but it’s another to steal games consistently. Elliott needs another great performance tonight to prove he can be trusted every night in the crease. His .903 save percentage on the season is evidence of how inconsistent his play has been thus far.
3. The Flyers dominance over the Wild has been intriguing. It’s been nearly three years (Nov. 20, 2014) since Philadelphia last lost to Minnesota. This Wild team is very similar to what the Flyers saw last season and they will look to make it six straight wins against the Western-Conference club. The Flyers may have not played well against Arizona, but they got a point, so with a victory here, they could be looking at finishing the homestand with five out of a possible six points.
The puck drops at 7:00 PM.