There’s nothing more exciting than two bad teams facing off against each other, especially when there is no rivalry that exists between them! We get to experience that tonight as the Philadelphia Flyers take on the Anaheim Ducks in the second and final matchup of the 2021-22 season. It’s a special occasion as well, with the Flyers celebrating Lou Nolan and his 50-plus years of service to the organization.
The Flyers and Ducks are both very bad. However, at one point, it looked like the Ducks were going to be a playoff time in the very weak Pacific Division. Essentially, any position is up for grabs. Unfortunately, the Ducks are practically out of the running with a 28-32-12 record through 72 games. They sit 16 points out of the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference and sixth in the Pacific Division, one point ahead of the San Jose Sharks and 16 points ahead of the Seattle Kraken in last place.
The Ducks are currently sitting with a 1-7-2 record in their last 10 games along with losing the last two games in a row to the Calgary Flames and the Edmonton Oilers. They beat the Flyers 4-1 in the last game that they played, with superstar forward Troy Terry notching his first career NHL hat-trick. John Gibson got the win saving 24 of 25 shots.
In the last five games, stud rookie and Calder Trophy contender Trevor Zegras leads the team in goals (2) and points (4), with one of those goals being his second lacrosse-style goal. Terry leads the team in assists with three over the last five games.
Terry and Zegras are the team leaders in points with 57 and 51 in 65 games respectively. Following them up is defenseman Cam Fowler, who at age 30 has looked much stronger than in recent seasons. He has 37 points in 68 games.
The starting goaltender for the Ducks will be Flyers legend, Anthony Stolarz. He owns a 10-7-2 record with a 2.55 goals-against average and a .920 save percentage with three shutouts. His three shutouts are tied for 10th in the entire NHL among goaltenders.
The Flyers are coming back to Wells Fargo Center after splitting a home and home with the Columbus Blue Jackets. They allowed four goals in the first game in Philadelphia, and then went to Columbus and scored those four right back. They’re 4-6-0 in their last 10 games, and the play on the ice, especially from the younger players, has been reassuring.
In their last five games, Kevin Hayes leads in assists (4) and points (5). Defenseman Ivan Provorov leads the team in goals with two. In terms of season totals, Cam Atkinson has hit the 50-point mark in 71 games, which leads the team. After him, it’s Travis Konecny with 44 points in 68 games. One player that I’d like to point out isn’t at the top of the leaderboard because of injuries and the tragic passing of his brother is Hayes, who sits at 26 points in 37 games. Despite all of the hardships he has been through this season, his play on the ice has been very strong, especially as of late, and everyone can appreciate that. It has been a hard season for Flyers fans, but Hayes’ play and attitude have been a light during these hard times.
The starting goaltender for the Flyers will be Martin Jones, whose last outing was the win against the Blue Jackets. He made 26 saves on 27 shots for a .963 save percentage, which brought his season totals up to a 3.29 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage.
This is a game that the Flyers can certainly win. Shutting down the two highlight reels known as Zegras and Terry will be paramount to their success. Hopefully, they can get a win for Mr. Nolan.
Oskar Lindblom — Scott Laughton — Cam Atkinson
Noah Cates — Kevin Hayes — Owen Tippett
James van Riemsdyk — Morgan Frost — Travis Konecny
Isaac Ratcliffe — Nate Thompson — Patrick Brown
Ivan Provorov — Cam York
Travis Sanheim — Rasmus Ristolainen
Kevin Connauton — Ronnie Attard
That’s all from me, everybody. Thank you, Lou, and go Flyers!
While you’re here, check out our recent conversation with the man himself, Lou Nolan!