Okay, this week is tough. The Flyers face their toughest stretch of the season presently, and they've already lost four straight. There is no room for optimism when it comes to talking about the Philadelphia Flyers right now.
Detroit Red Wings (23-18-11, 57 pts) at Philadelphia Flyers (25-22-5, 56 pts)
7 p.m. | Wells Fargo Center | South Philadelphia
In Philly: CSN Philly, 97.5 FM | Elsewhere: FS Detroit
Get the Detroit perspective at Winging It In Motown
BUT, maybe there's hope. The Detroit Red Wings are basically playing their B team tonight.
Pavel Datsyuk is out. Henrik Zetterberg is out. Jimmy Howard is out. Johan Franzen is out. They have roughly five players you've actually ever heard of in their roster tonight, and that includes starting goalie Jonas Gustavsson. It's almost at the point where I feel bad for the Red Wings ...
Holy smokes. Is Darren Helm our number 1 center tonight or is that Joakim Andersson?— Winging It In Motown (@wingingitmotown) January 28, 2014
... but then you remember they're the Red Wings.
The Flyers have completely shuffled their lineup, as you might expect after losing four straight, most recently that disaster against Boston on Saturday afternoon. Zac Rinaldo is listed as day-to-day and could play tonight, but according to Anthony SanFilippo, here's what the line rushes were at the morning skate:
Hartnell - Giroux - Voracek
Lecavalier - Schenn - Simmonds
Downie - Couturier - Read
Raffl - VandeVelde - Hall
So, Steve Downie gets back into the lineup a day after Kurt wrote about how bad of an idea it was to have him out of the lineup. Michael Raffl moves down to the fourth line, Vincent Lecavalier moves to the wing and Brayden Schenn moves back to center.
Who knows if the lineup changes will make a difference, but anything would be better than Saturday? ... right? Steve Mason in goal. 7 p.m. puck drop on home ice and CSN Philly. Big game in the standings. Need this one.