There are only two teams in the NHL riding longer Winning streaks than the Philadelphia Flyers and Winnipeg Jets and they are perennial powerhouses (Boston and Chicago). The teams we will see tonight are far from that as both teams missed the playoffs last year and they both currently rank 2nd from last in their respective divisions.
The Winnipeg Jets are riding high after consecutive wins over San Jose, Nashville and Detroit. The Flyers have defeated Edmonton, Ottawa and Pittsburgh. Both teams are booming with confidence and scoring goals of late. Both teams are also getting goaltending (what!) and both will be looking to keep their hot streak going. Who can pull it out.
Keys to the Game
LLW FTW!! Ladd, Little and Wheeler are still the driving force behind this team. The other lines have show up intermittently, but none is capable of the consistent dominance that Andrew Ladd, Bryan Little and Blake Wheeler. The Winnipeg Jets will need another strong showing from their dynamic trio if they want to extend their winning streak to four games.
Moar goaltending! Ondrej Pavelec has been sharp since returning from his mini benching. - he needs to keep this up! This is what top end starters do. No more slumping Ondrej. Keep the good time rolling.
Above even Evander! Jets young stud Evander Kane has been held off the score sheet for a little while - people have laid off because the team is winning. If they lose, that may change. So how out this Evander, score a goal or two to keep the haters silent.
I don't know how to scores a goal. The Flyers spent the early part of the season stuggling to score and these weren't run of the mill struggles - these were big time super D duper struggles. Despite scoring 11 goals in their last 3 games the Flyers remain dead last in goals for with 33 goals (2nd in goals per game) on the season. The Flyers will likely need to score more than their average of 1.83 goals per game if they want to win.
Almost Free Mason. What the fizzy is going on in Flyer land? The team can't score, but their starting goaltender is putting up great numbers. Who is this goalie? This goaltender is Steve Mason. Mason is spotting a shiny .930 save percentage - good for 10th best among qualified goalies in the NHL. Has he all of a sudden found his game? Is he on a short lived hot streak? Only time will tell, but the Flyers will look to ride him while he is hot. Will regression begin tonight?
Put your Cooter in the right spot. Sean Couturier may not have figured out how to light the lamp at the NHL level, but he has figured out how to play a very solid two way game. Cooter will face some tough matchups and be tasked with shutting down Jets scorers - will he go head to head with Scheifele? If so, who wins?
Player To Boo Mercilessly
Sean Couturier, because he is a big stupid dummy who will forever be compared to Mark Scheifele.
1-0 Winnipeg Jets
Chris Thorburn loses a fight.