Event: Boston Bruins at Philadelphia Flyers
Date/Time: Saturday, December 17, 2011 - 1 p.m. EDT.
Location: Wells Fargo Center (Capacity: 19,537), Philadelphia, PA.
Broadcast Info: Saturday's game between the Bruins and the Flyers will be broadcast live on NESN, and the NHL Network. The game can also be heard on the 98.5 the Sports Hub Radio Network, with Dave Goucher providing play-by-play, and Bob Beers providing analysis.
Last Time Out: The B’s are coming off a three-game winning streak after taking a 5-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators. Even without their captain Zdeno Chara, the Bruins have managed to take every win without him, though they will certainly be happy to have him back.
In Wednesday night’s game, Rich Peverley scored the first goal for the second time in two nights. He kicked started his team who scored four more goals, including two from fourth liner Daniel Paille. Chris Kelly and Patrice Bergeron also netted goals.
Philadelphia currently boasts a seven-game winning streak, going without a loss in the month of December. The most recent win was on Thursday where they took a 4-3 win against the Montreal Canadiens in Canada. Sergei Bobrovsky was in net and the Flyers had four different goal scorers in that game.
Storyline: This is the second time the Bruins and Flyers will meet this season. That last outing was opening night where the Flyers took the game 2-1 in Boston. Brad Marchand had the lone goal in that game for the B’s, while Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek each scored for the Flyers.
The Bruins are flying out to Philly now, and won’t have to deal with Chris Pronger this time, and perhaps Claude Giroux too. Pronger was diagnosed with a severe concussion and is out for the year. Giroux also has a concussion and hasn’t been cleared to play yet.
Meanwhile, Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara is out with a knee injury and it has not been decided if he will play or not.
Players To Watch: Giroux was the leading scorer for the Flyers before he was sidelined. Scott Hartnell is second on the team, though you can expect Jaromir Jagr to also provide some of the offense in the game.
Tim Thomas will have to be on his game, and with Chara’s status still unclear, the defensive game will have to step it up. Joe Corvo has netted a couple of goals in those games, and the rest of the pairings will have to continue to pinch in and keep the shots and opportunities to a minimum.
Also, you can expect the first line to come out and have a strong game for the Bruins. Milan Lucic, David Krejci and Nathan Horton have to come out and produce, or the Flyers offense is going to be the difference maker.
Prediction: I think the Flyers are going to be pumped for this game, and are going to put some extra emphasis on their defensive game with the number of injuries they are facing. But if the Bruins can come out and score two quick goals, we have seen they they can hold the lead well, even against the first place team in the Eastern Conference. Final Score: Bruins 4, Flyers 3 (OT).