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Flyers vs. Islanders Preview: Surely it can’t get worse, right?

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Who am I kidding, it’s the Flyers, it can always get worse!

John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports

After a laughable 5-1 loss on Tuesday at the hand of the Pittsburgh hockey club, the Flyers look to get back on track against the New York?/Brooklyn? Islanders tonight. The Islanders come into tonight having lost three straight games but still four points ahead of Philadelphia, and tied for the second wild card spot in the East.

The Flyers lineup will most likely look a little different, as one would assume Tyrell Goulbourne is set to make his NHL debut after his recall yesterday. The most logical role he would fill is Jori Lehtera’s position on the fourth line, however this is Dave Hakstol, so who knows what could happen?

The Islanders look to continue their high scoring ways, with the second most goals for in the Eastern Conference only trailing the monster of a team that is the Tampa Bay Lightning. Despite Jaroslav Halak having a save percentage of .904, and Thomas Greiss with a horrific .884 in 19 games, the Islanders are still very much in the playoff race.

NYI Player to Watch - Mathew Barzal

Mat Barzal has easily been one of the most fun players to watch this season, despite his presence on a rival team. The dazzling rookie has 36 points in 40 games and has a CF% of 54.07. The Flyers should be extra close attention to number 13 in this one.

The season series between the two teams is a 2-0 lead for New York, winning a home and home in late November.

PHI Point Leaders

  1. Claude Giroux - 46 points
  2. Jakub Voracek - 46 points
  3. Sean Couturier - 36 points

NYI Point Leaders

  1. Josh Bailey - 50 points
  2. John Tavares - 49 points
  3. Anders Lee - 39 points

Team Metrics

PHI CF%: 49.26 - 17th in NHL

NYI CF%: 49.06 - 20th in NHL

PHI xGF%: 50.33 - 17th in NHL

NYI xGF%: 49.06 - 20th in NHL

I don’t think there’s a better way to describe these two teams this season other than consistently mediocre. I had to do quite a few double takes just to make sure those rankings were actually the same.

Alright how low favored are we in the predictions toda...oh...well okay nevermind then...

Shockingly enough, the Flyers are the heavy favorites in this one. The average of the predictions up so far have the Flyers as 57% favorites, the highest percentage coming in at 59%. It’s the Goulbourne factor, it has to be!

Flyers Projected Lineup

Forwards

Giroux - Couturier - Konecny

Raffl - Filppula - Voracek

Weal - Patrick - Simmonds

Leier - Laughton - Goulbourne

Defense

Provorov - Gostisbehere

Hagg - MacDonald

Manning - Gudas

Goalie

Elliott

(Neuvirth)