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Thursday, November 3rd (All times eastern)

Washington Capitals (4-7-0) at Philadelphia Flyers (6-3-1), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Philadelphia Flyers begin a five-game homestand tonight when they welcome the Washington Capitals to the Wachovia Center.

The Flyers enter the set with a terrific 4-1-0 record on friendly ice.

Philly is coming off a key road win Sunday up in Ottawa. Mike Knuble scored two goals and Robert Esche made 39 saves, as the Flyers downed the Senators, 5-3, at the Corel Centre.

Simon Gagne posted a goal and an assist for the Flyers, who have won five of their last seven games (5-1-1). Peter Forsberg, Eric Desjardins and Joni Pitkanen posted two assists apiece in the win.

Gagne has found the net in two of the last three games after going back-to- back games without a goal. Forsberg, meanwhile, has an assist in all but one game this season.

Esche has won his last two starts after beginning the season 2-2-1. His goals- against average, however, remains a bloated 3.14 and his save percentage stands at .889.

On the injury front, Flyers captain Keith Primeau is battling concussion symptoms after being elbowed by the Canadiens' Alexander Perezhogin on October 25. Primeau is sidelined indefinitely.

Philadelphia will host Atlanta on Saturday.

Washington, meanwhile, hasn't played since last Friday because Saturday's game in Florida was postponed due to the effects of Hurricane Wilma. The Caps have lost three of their last four games, including Friday's 4-2 contest in Tampa. Vincent Lecavalier snapped a tie game with 5:07 left in the third period to lift the Lightning.

Alexander Ovechkin had a pair of goals for the Capitals, while Olaf Kolzig made 24 saves in the Washington setback.

Ovechkin posted his third multi-goal game of the season, and he leads NHL rookies with eight tallies overall.

Washington, which is 1-4 on the road, will host Atlanta on Friday.

Philly went 3-1 against the Caps in 2003-04. Washington is 0-13-1 in its last 14 trips to the City of Brotherly Love, dating back to January 31, 1998.

11/03 10:52:00 ET


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