Flyers – Islanders: A Konecny Comeback? | GAME PREVIEW

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GAME DAY | Philadelphia Flyers vs New York Islanders Preview, TV, Start Time, Statistical Match-up, Projected Lines, Starting Goalies, Keys to Victory, Flyers Tickets

Game Preview

Back To Basics

Despite being the noticeably outworked team in every game they’ve played this week, the Flyers have somehow managed to win each of those three games. With Travis Konecny expected to return to the lineup tonight, and Brian Elliott backstopping the team, can Philadelphia sweep another team this week and go 7-2-1 to open their season?

Last game (January 30, 2021): PHI 3  NYI 2  F-OT

For a complete game recap: Flyers – Islanders: Philly Steals Another One

Players to Watch

  • Travis Konecny
    Most of the top-six veteran forwards responded in a big way last night to their teammate getting benched. While it’s up to all of them to continue to play the right kind of hockey, Konecny should be pretty fired up to get back on the ice and redeem himself.
  • Erik Gustafsson
    If Gustafsson doesn’t watch the game from the press box, he’s another component who will need to show marked improvement in tonight’s game. Alain Vigneault has called him out on his play, and the defenseman himself admitted yesterday that he has not been playing the kind of hockey he should be. His leash is likely getting shorter and shorter.
  • Scott Laughton
    Scoring the overtime winner is a pretty good way to get your first goal of the season, but Laughton has been working hard even when he hasn’t gotten on the score sheet. The confidence boost from last night’s goal should propel him into an even bigger offensive role.

Keys to Victory

  • Combat the Forecheck
    If there’s one thing the Flyers have not been able to solve (going back all the way to the summer’s playoffs) it’s the Islanders heavy, persistent forecheck. Philadelphia can’t afford to spend another game chasing the play and getting run over on the forecheck.
  • Play a Full Game
    The Flyers haven’t put together a full 60 minutes of good hockey yet this season, yet they’ve battled their way into a winning record. If they’re going to continue to be successful, they need to show up to play for more than 20 minutes a night. Last night’s first period was probably the best the team has looked in a long time. They need to replicate it and continue it throughout the game.
  • Full Defensive Coverage
    On both New York goals last night there were significant defensive breakdowns, not the least of which was leaving a shooter wide open and all alone at the bottom of the circle. The blueliners need to be aware of their surroundings and stick to their assigned coverage.

Statistical Matchup
Wells Fargo Center, PA | January 31, 7:00 PM ET | TV: ESPN+, NBCSP, MSG+, SNP, SNO, SNE, SN360 

2020-21 statistics

ISLANDERS FLYERS
7 (27th) Points (rank) 13 (3rd)
3-4-1 Record 6-2-1
1-4-1 Home/Away 4-1-0
3-4-1 Last 10 6-2-1
2.00 GF/G 3.44
2.50 GA/G 3.00
15.6 PP% 25.9
78.3 PK% 74.2
47.84  CF% 42.86

 

Pre-game Quotes
 
Projected Forwards, Defense and Goaltenders (subject to change)
Forwards
Lee – Barzal – Bailey
Komarov – Nelson – Eberle
Bellows – Pageau – Wahlstrom
Martin – Cizikas – Clutterbuck
Girous – Patrick – Voracek
van Riemsdyk – Hayes – Konecny
Lindblom – Laughton – Farabee
Raffl – Bunnaman – Aube-Kubel
Defensemen
Pelech – Pulock
Leddy – Mayfield
Greene – Dobson
Provorov – Gostisbehere
Sanheim – Myers
Gustafsson – Braun
Out of the lineup
Scratched: Aho, Dal Colle, Johnston
Injured: Beauvillier
Scratched: Hagg, Friedman
Injured: Couturier, Frost
Goalies (2020-21 statistics)
Ilya Sorokin Brian Elliott
Record: 0-2-0
GAA: – 3.57
Sv%: – .875
SO: 0
Alternate: Cory Schneider
Record: 2-0-1
GAA: – 1.98
Sv%: – .938
SO: 1
Alternate: Carter Hart
 Game Expectations
After a rough start, the Islanders played 40 minutes of strong hockey last night. They got a point out of it, but the loss was their fourth straight and they’ll be on the hunt for a win tonight. The Flyers came out strong to start the game, but then barely hung on for the win. Tonight, they’ll need to keep their foot on the gas and try to contain a New York team who has given them trouble for some months now.

Bottom Line

Play simple, play smart, and play good defense – that’s what the Flyers need tonight. Brian Elliott will be strong and calm in the net, it’s the team in front of him who needs to step up and show up. With another series against Boston looming later this week, Philly needs to wrap up this week with nothing but wins.

 Video Highlights

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By Amy Johnson, Lead Correspondent
The Flyers Report
Copyright © 2021 Rocket Sports

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