Boston Bruins vs Philadelphia Flyers 1/25/16 Preview
Boston Bruins (25-17-5) at Philadelphia Flyers (20-17-8) (7 pm EST)
The Flyers have stole four points from the Bruins already this season. An overtime win on October 21 and a late two-goal rally on January 15.
Claude Giroux scored that OT winner and another one back in that fall game (+ 3 assists/2 games), while linemate Jakub Voracek also has five points in two games against their heated rivals.
Recently, things haven’t gone so smoothly for the Flyers. They traded away a couple of overpriced veterans and hold a 5-4-1 record over their last 10, including two losses in a row.
Backup goaltender Michal Neuvirth will get the start for Philly. His 10-5-2 record, 2.05 GAA, .936 Sv% and three shutouts are much more impressive than starter Steve Mason’s stats, so the thought here is that a big performance by Neuvirth can get them a much-needed win.
The Bruins on the other hand, have won four of their last five and are chasing a division title.
Tuuka Rask, who was iced from the lineup at the last second on Saturday due to an injury, was the first Boston goalie off the ice this morning indicating he will indeed start for the Bruins. The fact that he rode the pine this weekend makes you question his health, but if Head Coach Claude Julien thinks he gives his team the best chance to win tonight then so be it.
Up front Ryan Spooner will switch lines and ride shotgun next to David Krejci and Loui Eriksson. A move which the Bruins hope will balance their offense. Brett Connolly will replace him next to Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand on the other scoring line. Marchand has four goals in as many games recently.
As rivalry games and any game involving either of these teams often get heated, special teams are of major importance. If the Flyers can’t stay disciplined, this game could get ugly in more ways than one. Their powerplay and penalty kill are both horrendous (8th and 5th worst in the NHL, respectively), so Bruins PP specialist Torey Krug could gather a couple of points.
Flyers rookie sensation Shayne Gostisbehere has a goal and pair of helpers in his last couple of games, bringing his season total to 19 points (8 goals, 3 GWG) in just 27 games.