LBC GameDay Preview: Florida Panthers Vs. Philadelphia Flyers

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Panthers and the Flyers face off for the second time this season. Are the revitalized Flyers up to the task of keeping Florida on the short end of the ice, or can the Cats catch the Jackets and the Islanders in the standings?

Tonight, the Panthers will host the Philadelphia Flyers at BB&T Center in Sunrise, FL. It's the second of of three meetings between the two clubs this season. Florida dropped the first one, 2-1 on October 8th on the road, and the series will conclude back in the Sunshine State on April 8th. The Panthers are coming off a moderately successful road trip, going 2-2-1 against the Western Conference. Tonight marks the first game of a five-game homestand. They'll go on to host the New York Rangers on Wednesday, the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday, the Ottawa Senators on December 3rd, and the Winnipeg Jets on December 5th.

The Flyers have just finished a three-game homestand, earning six points. They defeated the Senators, 5-2 on Tuesday, the Buffalo Sabres 4-1 on Thursday, and the New York Islanders, 5-2 on Saturday. They'll travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Bolts on Wednesday.

The Panthers and Flyers last faced off on October 8th, as the 0-3 Flyers were trying to earn their first points of the season against the visiting 1-1 Panthers. Brayden Schenn (2) and Braydon Coburn (1) each lit the lamp in the first period for the Flyers against Tim Thomas, who stopped only three shots before getting removed due to an apparent groin injury. The goals forced Florida to play catch up through the final two periods. Brad Boyes (1) halved the lead with seven seconds remaining in the second period, with helpers from Brian Campbell and Sasha Barkov. Jacob Markstrom stopped all 25 shots in a losing effort, while Steve Mason went 33-for-34 between the pipes. * Full Recap * Box Score

Panthers @ Flyers Highlights 10/08/13 (via NHL)

Then-coach Kevin Dineen spoke about the injury to Thomas afterward:

Just slightly pulled his groin, so I don't think it's anything long-term, but we will evaluate him [Wednesday] and see where he's at.

Go to Broad Street Hockey for more on the Flyers.

In Florida's last match, the Panthers came back from a two-goal third-period deficit to get the Calgary Flames to overtime, but ended up losing in the sixth round of a shootout. Tom Gilbert (1) opened the scoring for the Panthers in the first, and Jimmy Hayes (1) and Marcel Goc (6) also lit the lamp. Nick Bjugstad, Sean Bergenheim, and Scott Gomez tallied assists. Brad Boyes and Tomas Fleischmann each beat Calgary goaltender Reto Barra in the skills competition. For the Flames, Joe Colborne (3), Sevn Baertschi (PP, 2), and Blair Jones (1) earned the markers. Jiri Hudler, Mike Cammalleri, and Sean Monahan beat Tim Thomas in the shootout. * Full Recap * Box Score

Islanders @ Flyers Highlights 11/23/13 (via NHL)

Philly coach Craig Berube spoke later:

They believe they can win. We killed off two big penalties there in the third period; huge kills. I thought they did a real good job, that's important. We've been giving up power-play goals the last four or five games and we did a real good job against a real good power play. I thought overall the third period we were on our heels but we did what we had to do to win the games.

To read about the Islanders, go to Lighthouse Hockey.

Game Time: 7:30 PM ET

Broadcast: CSN-PH, FS-F

All-Time Series:
The Panthers are 29-40-7-5 all-time against the Flyers, a .432 points percentage.

Season Series: Second of three meetings. Philadelphia won a regulation length match in early October, 2-1.

Standings


Florida Panthers: 6-13-5, .354, 17 points, on pace for 58 points. Seventh in the Atlantic Division, 15th in the Eastern Conference, 28th in the NHL. Last Five: L-W-W-L-O.

Philadelphia Flyers: 10-10-2, .500, 22 points, on pace for 82 points. Fifth in the Metropolitan Division, tied for 10th in the Eastern Conference, tied for 22nd in the NHL. Last Five: W-O-W-W-W.

This Date in Panthers History

The Panthers are 2-3-1 on November 25th since their inaugural season.

1998 - Bruins 1, Panthers 0
2000 - Panthers 2, Lightning 1, OT
2005 - Panthers 6, Penguins 3
2006 - Thrashers 1, Panthers 0
2009 - Rangers 2, Panthers 1, SO
2011 - Lightning 2, Panthers 1

Common Thread

Panther's RW Scottie Upshall spent parts of three seasons with the Flyers, scoring 27 goals and 37 assists in 134 contests.

Probable Lineups

Panthers

Forwards

Jonathan Huberdeau - Nick Bjugstad - Tomas Fleischmann
Scottie Upshall - Aleksander Barkov - Brad Boyes
Marcel Goc - Scott Gomez - Sean Bergenheim
Jimmy Hayes
- Shawn Matthias - Krys Barch

Defensemen
Brian Campbell - Tom Gilbert
Erik Gudbranson - Dmitry Kulikov
Mike Weaver - Dylan Olsen

Goaltenders
Tim Thomas - Scott Clemmensen

Flyers

Forwards
Scott Hartnell - Claude Giroux - Jakub Voracek
Brayden Schenn - Vincent LeCavalier - Wayne Simmonds
Steve Downie - Sean Couturier - Matt Read
Zac Rinaldo - Adam Hall - Jay Rosehill

Defensemen
Kimmo Timonen - Braydon Coburn
Nicklas Grossmann - Mark Streit
Luke Schenn - Erik Gustafsson
Goaltenders
Steve Mason - Ray Emery

Special Teams

Team PP Rate PP Rank PK Rate PK Rate
Panthers 9.3% 30th 77.1% 27th
Flyers 15.1% 24th 82.4% 16th

Panthers Leaders

Category 1st 2nd 3rd
Goals Brad Boyes 8 Marcel Goc 6
Jonathan Huberdeau 5
Assists Brian Campbell 9 Tomas Fleischmann 9 Scottie Upshall 7
Points Brian Campbell 12 Tomas Fleischmann 12 Jonathan Huberdeau 11
Shots on Goal Tomas Fleischmann 56 Tomas Kopecky 51 Brad Boyes 48
Faceoffs Marcel Goc 54.4% Sasha Barkov 49.2% Nick Bjugstad 48.8%
Hits Erik Gudbranson 59 Mike Weaver 48 Shawn Matthias 45
Blocked Shots Mike Weaver 45 Erik Gudbranson 40 Tom Gilbert 34

Flyers Leaders

Category First Second Third
Goals Vincent LeCavalier 8
Matt Read 8 Brayden Schenn 7
Assists Claude Giroux 12 Jakub Voracek 9
Brayden Schenn 7
Points Claude Giroux 15
Brayden Schenn 14
Vincent LeCavalier 13
Shots on Goal Matt Read 58
Claude Giroux 57
Wayne Simmonds 49
Faceoffs Adam Hall 64.0%
Claude Giroux 50.0%
Sean Couturier 49.9%
Hits Zac Rinaldo 76
Niklas Grossmann 62
Luke Schenn 61
Blocked Shots Niklas Grossmann 60
Braydon Coburn 35
Kimmo Timonen 31

Thanks for reading today's preview. Tune in for the Game Thread, going live at 7 PM. You can read more on today's tilt over at Broad Street Hockey.

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