2014-14 NHL Season :: Game 34 of 82
5th in Metropolitan
|Tuesday, December 23, 2014 :: 7:00 p.m. ET|
|Xcel Energy Center :: Saint Paul, Minn., USA|
|Get the Minnesota perspective at Hockey Wilderness|
Some quick pre-game notes:
- The Flyers have won two games in a row! How cool is that? And two back-to-back road games in Canada where they trailed by multiple goals, at that! Things aren't terrible for once. Love it.
- In fact, if you pay attention to the NHL-defined version of .500, the Flyers can reach that mark with a win tonight! Go team!
- Zac Rinaldo will miss his second game in a row. He missed Sunday's game in Winnipeg with an injury, but he was skating this morning, so it's unclear if this is him still missing time with said injury or if Craig Berube has decided to healthy scratch Rinaldo.
- It would actually make sense if it was the latter, since last game the Flyers' fourth line of Chris VandeVelde, Vincent Lecavalier, and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare teamed up to get the Flyers two goals on Sunday. We obviously should not expect that group to get two goals a game going forward but it would be cool if the team can keep rolling a fourth line that can occasionally score goals and stuff.
- Sounds like the lineup will otherwise remain the same. So no Michael Del Zotto (again). Ray Emery in net, too, so no Rob Zepp encore just yet.
- The Wild are actually a pretty darn good team, even if their record isn't outstanding. Though the last time these two teams played, the Flyers actually took it to the Wild for most of the game and only missed out on a point due to a late defensive breakdown.
- Minnesota has lost three games in a row, with the last two being in overtime. They'll start Niklas Backstrom in net tonight, and he has been bad lately (he has a .901 save percentage this year in 14 starts and has been at .900 or worse in each of his last five starts).