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NHL on NBCSN: Flyers look to turn things around against Sabres

Apr 6, 2014, 11:23 AM EDT

Philadelphia Flyers v Buffalo Sabres Getty Images

NBCSN continues its coverage of the 2013-14 campaign tonight when the Philadelphia Flyers host the Buffalo Sabres at Wells Fargo Center at 7:30 p.m. ET. In addition to NBCSN, you can also watch the game online.

Things have gotten exciting for the Philadelphia Flyers in all the wrong ways.

The Flyers are winless in six of the past seven games and now find their hold on third place in the Metropolitan Division getting slippery. The Columbus Blue Jackets are two points behind them and the New Jersey Devils are three back.

In those six losses, the Flyers have given up 17 goals and scored eight. Seeing the offense dry up at a time of the season when they need to get everything together for the playoffs is disconcerting. Getting shutout in back-to-back games against the Blues and Blue Jackets has helped add to the uneasiness in Philly and for good reason.

If there’s one Flyers player to keep an eye on it’s Vincent Lecavalier. In 51 career games against the Sabres, he has 40 points including 21 goals. While he’d recently been relegated to fourth line duty, he has three goals in the past five games, albeit goalless in the last three.

 

If the Flyers want to avoid facing the Boston Bruins in the first round, they have to get back on the winning track. The schedule might appear to be smiling upon the Flyers as the worst team in the NHL comes to town in the Buffalo Sabres, but appearances can be deceiving.

The Sabres are 1-5-1 in the past seven, but in the last two games they’ve given the St. Louis Blues and Detroit Red Wings a handful despite losing. With a pair of one-goal games, what the Sabres lack in talent they make up for in tenacity. Tyler Ennis is the guy to watch for them as he has two goals and an assist in the past three games.

If the Flyers want to get their offense sparked, they’ll do it against either Matt Hackett or Nathan Lieuwen in goal.

The tandem spent most of the season in the AHL, but with injuries to Jhonas Enroth and Michal Neuvirth, they’ve had to hold down the fort. If there’s anything that’s been a trademark of coach Ted Nolan’s team it’s that if they’re given opportunities to steal points, they’ll do it.

Look for the Sabres to face Steve Mason in goal for the Flyers. Ray Emery took a 4-2 loss against the Boston Bruins on Saturday afternoon.

  1. phillyphanatic77 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:38 AM

    C’mon Flyers you put yourself in this position with two straight horrendous 3rd periods in the last two, must win games. Now is the time to step up and take out Buffalo AND Florida. The schedules been unforgiving (and eventhough we’ve stuck with the elite) this team has the Blue Jackets and Devils breathing down their necks now. Still, with 5 games to play and 87 points the Flyers are in better position than those two. Can’t play down to the competition, unfortunately this team usually matches the opponent. For better or worse.

  2. mcphillthy - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    Things are falling apart at a bad time. They’ve made their bed…. And they’ve been pooping in it the past few games. The mistakes have cost them too many points. Get it together, boys.

  3. flyerguy73 - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:36 PM

    If they cannot beat the lowly sabres, we do not deserve to go to the playoffs!

    • mcphillthy - Apr 6, 2014 at 3:41 PM

      Damn right! I hope they don’t leave us blue balled this season

  4. billiam55 - Apr 6, 2014 at 5:45 PM

    go sabers

  5. joey4id - Apr 6, 2014 at 7:06 PM

    CBJ win and Flyers loss will put the heat on the Flyers to stay out of a wild card spot. Their slow and error prone d men are making the stretch difficult for the team. Schenn, Grossman, and Coburn will cough up the puck if fore checked. Watch for turn overs.

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