NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, March 13th
(All times Eastern)
New Jersey Devils (40-24-5) at Philadelphia Flyers (39-22-7), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The New Jersey Devils will try to complete a sweep of an
important home-and-home series with the Flyers, as they visit Philadelphia's
Wells Fargo Center for tonight's Atlantic Division battle.
The Devils won their fourth straight game on Sunday, recording a 4-1 home win
over the Flyers, who entered the showdown with a two-point lead over New
Jersey for the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race. The
divisional foes are now tied for the spot and are four points ahead of the
seventh-seeded Ottawa Senators and four behind No. 4 Pittsburgh.
Philadelphia had won five straight before allowing the Devils to score three
times in the third period en route to Sunday's win. It marked the first time
the home team won in four meetings between the Flyers and Devils this season.
The Devils own a slight 3-2 edge in the season series and have claimed five of
the past seven meetings overall. Philadelphia has lost its last three home
games against the Devils after winning the previous six meetings between the
clubs in the City of Brotherly Love.
New Jersey is 21-12-2 as the road team this year, while the Flyers are 17-10-5
Ilya Kovalchuk registered a goal and two assists, spearheading New Jersey's
offense in Sunday's 4-1 triumph. Kovalchuk has five tallies and four assists
over his last four games and enters tonight needing just one more goal for 400
in his career.
The Devils led Philadelphia, 1-0, after 40 minutes, but the Flyers scored just
16 seconds into the third period to even the score. However, Anton Volchenkov
notched the game-winner just 2:29 after that and Kovalchuk made it a 3-1 game
at 8:08 of the third. Zach Parise close the scoring with a power-play goal
with just 5:41 remaining in regulation.
"I thought we did a pretty good job defensively, didn't give them too many
opportunities," Parise said of his team's performance on Sunday.
Parise and Patrik Elias both scored a power-play goal and collected an assist
for New Jersey, which can match a season high for consecutive wins tonight.
The Devils previously won five in a row from Jan. 31-Feb. 7.
Martin Brodeur picked up his 650th career win by stopping 18 shots.
Sergei Bobrovsky returned to the crease for the Flyers on Sunday and gave up
four goals on 31 shots in his first appearance since Feb. 18. Ilya Bryzgalov
had started the previous 11 games and will be back between the pipes tonight.
Bryzgalov was named the NHL's First Star for the week ending March 11 and he
will carry a shutout streak of 136 minutes, 13 seconds into tonight's contest.
Philadelphia's Claude Giroux scored the lone goal for his team on Sunday,
tying the game at 1-1 after a nice behind-the-net feed from Jaromir Jagr.
"After that goal, I thought we were going to get the momentum back," Giroux
New Jersey finished 2-for-5 on the power play after the Flyers had been
perfect killing penalties in their previous six games.
Flyers forward Jakub Voracek may return tonight after missing the last three
games with concussion-like symptoms. Voracek has been out since taking a hard
hit from Detroit's Niklas Kronwall on March 6, but the Czech winger skated on
Monday and is questionable for tonight.
Philadelphia defensemen Kimmo Timonen, Andrej Meszaros and Pavel Kubina are
all expected to miss tonight's game.
03/13 10:38:13 ET