NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, December 26th (All times eastern)
Philadelphia Flyers (16-18-2) at Carolina Hurricanes (9-22-6), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Philadelphia Flyers will try to post consecutive wins for the first time in over a month when they visit the Carolina Hurricanes for tonight's battle at RBC Center.
The Flyers ended a four-game slide with Wednesday's 5-2 victory in Tampa and also picked up just their third win in 14 games (3-10-1). Tonight, Philly has a good chance at winning back-to-back tests for the first time since November 16-18 as it's playing Carolina, the only team beneath the Flyers in the NHL standings.
Tonight also marks Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette's first game in Raleigh since he was fired by the Hurricanes last December. Laviolette is just 3-7-1 since replacing John Stevens in Philadelphia, but led Carolina to the franchise's only Stanley Cup title in 2006.
Philadelphia is 2-0 against the Hurricanes this season and has won four in a row, five of six and nine of the last 11 meetings. The Flyers have also come out on top in five straight and seven of their last eight trips to Raleigh.
Flyers captain Mike Richards and Blair Betts each has two goals on Wednesday to lead Philly to the win at St. Pete Times Forum. For Richards it was his fourth multi-goal game of the season, while Betts recorded the first two-goal game of his career.
Simon Gagne added an empty-net goal and one assist for the Flyers, while Michael Leighton picked up the win with a 31-save performance. Leighton, who was claimed off waivers from Carolina, was filling in for the injured Brian Boucher, who missed Wednesday's game after cutting his finger in Monday's loss to Florida. Boucher is questionable for tonight's test.
The Flyers began a six-game road trip with the win over the Lightning, Philadelphia is 7-9-0 as the guest this year and has just three victories in its last 10 road games.
Carolina, which is 10 points behind Philadelphia in the standings, has lost two straight and six of its last eight games. The Hurricanes have been outscored by an 8-2 margin in their last two defeats, a 3-1 setback on Monday against the Rangers and Wednesday's 5-1 loss to Montreal.
Glen Metropolit had two of Montreal's three power-play scores in Carolina's most recent defeat.
Carolina's goaltenders let in five goals on only 25 shots. Cam Ward got the start and let in three on just seven shots in the first 9 1/2 minutes of the game, while Manny Legace made 16 saves the rest of the way.
Brandon Sutter had the lone goal for the Hurricanes, who are completing a four-game homestand tonight. Carolina is 8-9-2 as the host this season.
12/26 10:49:54 ET