NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, October 29th (All times eastern)
Carolina Hurricanes (4-3-3) at Philadelphia Flyers (5-4-1), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - New Flyers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov said he lost confidence in himself during his team's most recent loss. That could cause some concern for a Philadelphia club hoping to avoid dropping three in a row for the first time this season.
It doesn't help that opposing Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward is riding high after a big victory on Friday.
Carolina tries to build off its shutout victory last night on Saturday in Philadelphia.
The Flyers engaged in a wild battle with the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday, falling behind by scores of 5-1 and 6-2 before roaring back to even things at six-all during the third period and eventually going ahead by a goal. However, the back-and-forth contest ultimately ended with Bryzgalov allowing Andrew Ladd's game-winning tally with 1:06 left in regulation in a 9-8 loss.
Bryzgalov yielded four goals on 10 shots after coming in to relieve Sergie Bobrovsky in the second period. Bobrovsky allowed five goals on 15 shots, but it was Bryzgalov who took the loss and had some harsh words for himself afterwards.
"I have zero confidence in myself right now," Bryzgalov said. "I am terrible. I will now apologize in front of the fans, in front of my teammates. I don't know what's going on. I have no answer for you guys. I thought in the last game against Montreal [a 5-1 loss on Wednesday], that nothing worse was going to happen. Today was worse."
That's not something that the Flyers want to hear from a goaltender that they invested $51 million in over the next nine seasons this past summer.
Philadelphia goaltending coach Jeff Resse thinks the change of cities may be getting to his netminder.
"It is my job to install confidence in him, and I will tell you what, things are going to turn," Reese told the Flyers' website. "He is in a different situation than he has ever been before. He is in a different market. He just has to simplify and go out and stop the puck."
Offensively, the Flyers matched a club record for the most combined goals in a game for the fourth time, though it was the first time they lost a 17-goal contest. They also outshot the Jets 48-25.
Danny Briere had two goals and two assists, while James van Riemsdyk ended with three points on a pair of goals and a helper. Kimmo Timonen added four assists for the Flyers, who have lost five of seven since opening the season with three victories in a row.
A visit from the Hurricanes could help. Philadelphia outscored Carolina 15-7 in winning three of the four meetings last year and has taken 10 of 12 and 14 of the past 17 games in the series. That includes five straight and seven of the last nine in Philadelphia.
Carolina, though, comes to town of the heels of last night's 3-0 victory over visiting Chicago. Ward was outstanding in a 30-save shutout, his first of the season and 17th in his career.
"I thought I was seeing the puck really well and that was because of the guys in front of me, who were clearing out guys in front and letting me see it and control it," said Ward, who stopped Chicago captain Jonathan Toews on a breakaway chance in the second period, getting a pad out on the attempt.
Ward has made at least 30 saves in four of his last five starts and was helped by the fact that Carolina has scored first in five of its last seven games.
Tim Brent, Brandon Sutter and Jiri Tlusty tallied for the Hurricanes, who snapped a three-game skid and moved to 4-1-2 in their last seven games.
"We really wanted to right the ship tonight and play a real solid 60 minutes and get things going before we head off to Philadelphia," Ward said. "Once again we showed the way that we are capable of playing. Now it's a matter of doing that on a consistent basis."
If head coach Paul Maurice opts to rest Ward on the back end of consecutive games, former Flyer Brian Boucher would get the start instead.
10/29 10:33:07 ET