New York Islanders at Philadelphia Flyers, 7:00pm ET
Wells Fargo Center — Philadelphia, PA — MSG+
Tonight, the Islanders take their 11-1-3 streak on the road to Philadelphia to face the Flyers. It’ll be the first of back-to-back games to end the season, with the second half coming tomorrow night in Buffalo. Most likely, Kevin Poulin will start at least one of those games, although there isn’t any word as to exactly which one (early tweets say it could be tonight). Either way, it would be prudent to give Evgeni Nabokov one of the nights off (update — Poulin confirmed starter).
One of the unique things about this particular trip to Philadelphia is how the Islanders have played against the Flyers this year. They’re 2-1 against them this season, and a win would make it the first time the Islanders have taken the season series since 2006-07, coincidentally the last time the Isles made the playoffs (divisional wins; a key to success!).
The Flyers are out of the playoff picture after a dismal season in Philly. They sit in 12th in the East with 45 points, and are currently in line for the seventh overall pick this year (draft lottery pending). There’s been a lot of talk about ousting Ilya Bryzgalov after the season via buyout, as is par for the course for a team that, according to CapGeek, is right up against the salary cap. It’s been a bad year for Philly, but there’s been a small surprise in Steve Mason after he was acquired at the deadline. He has a stellar .936 save percentage in five starts thus far, but of course that’s a very small sample size and his career number is .904, so that’s likely not for long.
Today’s Projected Lines
Moulson – Tavares – Boyes
Bailey – Nielsen – Okposo
Grabner – Aucoin – McDonald
Boulton – Cizikas – Martin
Hamonic – MacDonald
Visnovsky – Carkner
Streit – Strait