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Flyers visit Maple Leafs chasing fourth straight win

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:46 AM
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Flyers visit Maple Leafs chasing fourth straight win
Philadelphia Flyers vs. Toronto Maple Leafs

Philadelphia Flyers (16-17-3--35pts)
Toronto Maple Leafs (20-12-4--44pts)


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The Flyers come into tonight's game on their first three-game winning streak of the season… During that streak they have out-scored their opponent 13-8… The Flyers have also picked up at least a point in the standings in six of their last eight games, going 4-2-2 in that span… The Maple Leafs come into tonight's game also riding a three-game winning streak in which they have out-scored opponents, 13-5… The Leafs have gone unbeaten in regulation in their last eight games, going 5-0-3 in that span… The Leafs currently sit the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference, while the Flyers are 11th and just four points out of the seventh spot in the East.

This is the third and final game of the year between the Flyers and Maple Leafs with Toronto winning the first two meetings… Toronto is looking to sweep the Flyers for the first time since 2006-07 and a win in regulation would be the first sweep since the 1993-94 season (0-2-0)… The Flyers own a 5-2-0 record in their last seven games at Toronto… Four different Flyers have scored in the season series thus far, while Jakub Voracek (1g-1a) and Kimmo Timonen (2a) lead the Flyers against Toronto… Nazem Kadri has four points, all assists, in two games of the season series this year against the Flyers… Of the combined 13 goals in the season series, only one goal has come on special teams with the Flyers scoring on the power play.

The Maple Leafs rank tied for third in the NHL in regulation/overtime wins (20) - only Pittsburgh (25) & Chicago (22) have more this season… The Leafs penalty kill is 73-for-80 (91.3 percent) over the last 25 games (2/7 to 3/30) and currently sits tied for fourth in the NHL (85.7 percent), while the Flyers power-play is second overall in the NHL at 24.3 percent… Toronto has the fourth-most 5-on-5 goals in the NHL with 80… The Flyers are playing the second half of their ninth set of back-to-back games this year - they own a 4-4-0 record and have won the last two games in that circumstance.

4. Player to watch FLYERS: Wayne Simmonds - (RW) #17
Simmonds recorded a goal in last night's win over Montreal giving him points in four of his last five games with five points (2g-3a) in that stretch… Simmonds has one goal in the two-game season series so far, and overall, has four goals and six points in nine career games against the Maple Leafs.

5. Player to watch TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS: Joffrey Lupul - (LW) #19
Since returning from injury, Lupul has been the NHL's hottest player, posting at least a goal in six straight games for a total of eight goals, including three consecutive game-winning goals, and adding five assists during that stretch for 13 points… He recorded a four-point effort (1g-3a) in the Leafs last game, a 4-0 win at Ottawa… Against the Flyers, Lupul has five points (2g-3a) in six career games.

"We have to find a way to get two points every night and the past two games is a good example of our character by coming from behind."
- Sean Couturier

Last 10: Philadelphia 5-3-2; Toronto 5-2-3

Season series: This is the third and final meeting of the season between the teams. The Leafs won their first two games, most recently 4-2 in Philadelphia on Feb. 25.

Big story: Can the Flyers continue their strong recent play and surge into contention for a playoff spot? Or will the Maple Leafs, now past the turmoil of the trade deadline, continue to solidify their postseason spot?

Team Scope:

Flyers: The Flyers certainly felt good after winning their season-best third straight game, a come-from-behind 5-3 win against the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday.

However, they know they have to win a lot more than three games if they want to climb into the top eight in the Eastern Conference.

"It's a good sign [but] it doesn't matter how many games you win in a row," forward Simon Gagne said. "Every game from now on is going to be really big for us. … It doesn't matter if you win one in a row, two in a row, three in a row -- every game from now on is going to be big for us."

Maple Leafs: While most of the headlines Wednesday surrounded the Maple Leafs' purported chase for a goaltender, general manager Dave Nonis added a piece he felt was just as important -- stay-at-home defenseman Ryan O'Byrne from the Colorado Avalanche.

The 6-foot-5, 234-pound O'Byrne has just four points in 34 games, but was second on the Avalanche with 76 hits and fourth with 49 blocked shots.

"He's a defensive defenseman," Nonis told the Toronto Star. "We feel he can play with good players. He can play with John-Michael Liles, with a Jake Gardiner, a Mike Kostka. Those are the most likely pairings."

Who's hot: Flyers captain Claude Giroux has three goals and seven assists in the past seven games. … The last time Maple Leafs center Nazem Kadri was on the ice, he had his first NHL hat trick, plus an assist, in Toronto's 4-0 win at the Ottawa Senators on March 30.

Injury report: The Flyers will be missing forwards Danny Briere (concussion), Maxime Talbot (leg) and Jody Shelley (hip), and defensemen Braydon Coburn (shoulder), Andrej Meszaros (shoulder). Defenseman Nicklas Grossmann (upper-body) and forward Zac Rinaldo (lower-body) are questionable.

2012-2013 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Apr 04 '13 PHI 5 at TOR 3 J. Rosehill
Feb 25 '13 TOR 4 at PHI 2 M. Grabovski
Feb 11 '13 PHI 2 at TOR 5 M. Frattin
J. Voracek37162238-72782
C. Giroux37112637-71862
W. Simmonds34121325-87063
K. Timonen3742024+23220
B. Schenn3671522-71520
M. Read3191019-3212
D. Briere265813-13621
R. Fedotenko373912+101201
S. Couturier353912-11400
S. Gagne274711+0620
M. Talbot355510+22300
L. Schenn36369+43200
M. Knuble23448-12011
S. Hartnell21437-15420
B. Gervais34156-131000
Z. Rinaldo32325-78500
T. McGinn18325+01901
B. Coburn33145-104100
K. Foster17145-2610
E. Gustafsson16145-4201
N. Grossmann30134-12100
A. Hall27044+22300
T. Sestito7202+11201
A. Meszaros11022-9200
J. Rosehill1101+0501
H. Zolnierczyk7011+03600
O. Lauridsen4011+2600
K. Huskins14000-3400
S. Laughton5000+0000
E. Wellwood4000+0000
J. Shelley1000+0000
A. Lilja1000-1000
I. Bryzgalov3517-14-3959372.82.899
B. Boucher40-2-06552.50.891
M. Leighton10-1-05265.08.808
N. Kadri37172239+191951
P. Kessel37102434-51632
J. van Riemsdyk3715924-61642
T. Bozak37101323-6432
D. Phaneuf3771623-24321
N. Kulemin3771421-31600
C. Franson3431720+8620
C. MacArthur3071017+6621
M. Grabovski378715-82401
J. Lupul108614+9833
J. McClement376713+0600
C. Gunnarsson2911213+81200
M. Frattin217512+4403
J. Liles23279+1400
M. Kostka32088-82500
M. Fraser34066+145400
F. McLaren28325+16302
L. Komarov31145-11401
C. Orr34134+313400
K. Holzer22213-122801
J. Gardiner7022+0000
D. Steckel13011-2000
M. Brown12011+17000
R. Hamilton7011+0000
M. Komisarek4000+2200
J. Reimer2313-5-4556662.60.917
B. Scrivens187-8-0415002.59.918
J. Rynnas10-0-0060.001.000
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