The Philadelphia Flyers are welcoming the Washington Capitals back to the Wells Fargo Center. The two teams met in a 3-1 Capitals win on Sunday. Since then, the Flyers came from behind to beat the Sabres in a shootout and the Capitals blew a 4-1 lead to the Devils before winning in overtime.
Projected lines and pairs
Philippe Myers is healthy, but is being sent a message due to inconsistent play. He was weak on the puck on the Sabres’ opening goal Tuesday and hasn’t met expectations recently.
Follow us on Twitter (@PhillyHockeyNow) and keep an eye out for lineup updates as we get closer to game time.
- The Flyers are 13-7-3 on the season and 7-3-2 at home.
- The Capitals are 15-6-4 on the season and 8-3-2 on the road.
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- The road team has won in each head-to-head matchup so far this season. The Flyers won 7-4 on February 7th and the Capitals won 3-1 on Sujnday.
Keys to Victory
1. Keep Ovechkin in check
The Flyers did a great job of limiting Alex Ovechkin‘s offensive contributions last season. However, the same can’t be said about this season. He had points on all four Capitals goals (two goals, two assists) in the Flyers’ 7-4 win and scored the Capitals’ opening goal on Sunday.
Keeping Ovechkin and the Capitals top line – and power play for that matter – in check will go a long way for the Flyers in this one.
2. Clean things up defensively
The Flyers have had several defensive breakdowns in each of their last few games. It cost them on Sunday against the Capitals, and it put them in a huge first-period hole on Tuesday against the Sabres. They are still looking for some sort of stability on the blue line.
If the Flyers are able to limit their defensive breakdowns, they should be able to score a few goals to win this one. Playing a smart, simple game is important against any team, but particularly against the Capitals at this juncture.
3. Capitalize on the power play
The Flyers are one of the worst teams in the league on both the penalty kill and power play this season. Hopefully, the special teams play in the third period on Tuesday night could be a sign of things to come.
A power-play goal tied the game in the third period and the penalty kill was successful in the final minutes to send the game to overtime against the Sabres. The Flyers went 0 for 4 on the power play in both games against the Capitals this season. The Capitals, on the other hand, are 1 for 2 (1 for 1 in D.C., 0 for 1 on Sunday).
They are getting their opportunities on the power play and they need to capitalize.
The Flyers and Capitals are set for a 7:00 p.m. puck drop on Thursday night.
Photo Credit: Heather Barry Images