Preview: Red Wings roll into town
The struggling Red Wings come to Philly in a battle for the draft lottery standings.
The Detroit Red Wings, so recently on the verge of attaining a wildcard spot in the playoffs, have been on a downward skid since the trade deadline, and are 3-7-0 in their last ten with 71 points in 71 games played. It was an active deadline for the Red Wings, too, which saw Tyler Bertuzzi traded to the Boston Bruins and Filip Hronek to the Vancouver Canucks. This deadline was particularly hard on captain Dylan Larkin, who just signed a new contract with the club and saw his best friend Bertuzzi leave the team. Selling off assets at the deadline, again, has sparked some questions surrounding Steve Yzerman’s aptly named Yzerplan, namely: “When will the rebuild end?”
Still, this is a team with a pretty solid prospect pool, and exciting young talent in forward Lucas Raymond and Calder-winning defenseman Moritz Seider. They’re not a Cup contender yet, but they do have a few of the pieces in place and, potentially, more down the line.
You could make the same argument about the Philadelphia Flyers: a few pieces in place, but lacking enough elite talent to be legitimately considered a Cup contending team. The Flyers have back-to-back wins going into tonight’s game, against the Florida Panthers and Minnesota Wild, which is great for Team “Young Players Are Fun & Should Excel,” and terrible for Team Tank; they’re 4-4-2 in their last ten with 66 standings points in 71 games. Tyson Foerster has been a lot of fun, with 6 points in 7 games played at the NHL level, but unfortunately he won’t be in the lineup for this game as he and Egor Zamula return to the Phantoms to play “meaningful hockey” as the AHL team makes a playoff push. Expect another 11 forwards, seven defensemen situation barring returns from injury by any of Nic Deslauriers, Travis Konecny, or Sean Couturier.
Projected Flyers Lineup
Joel Farabee - Noah Cates - Owen Tippett
JvR - Kevin Hayes - Wade Allison
Brendan Lemieux - Morgan Frost - Kieffer Bellows
Scott Laughton - Tanner Lacynzski
Ivan Provorov - Cam York
Travis Sanheim - Rasmus Ristolainen
Nick Seeler - Tony DeAngelo
Projected Red Wings Lineup
Pius Suter - Dylan Larkin - Lucas Raymond
Dominik Kubalik - Andrew Copp - David Perron
Matt Luff - Joe Veleno - Filip Zadina
Jonatan Berggren - Austin Czarnik - Alex Chiasson
Jake Walman - Moritz Seider
Olli Maata - Robert Hagg (Flyers legend)
Simon Edvinsson - Jordan Oesterle
Players to Watch
Beezer has a goal in each of his last four games with six points in that span, and those contributions to the scoresheet have been instrumental in the Flyers’ victories of late. It’s so good to see Farabee playing good hockey again, and he is a key player for the Flyers moving forward; finishing strong would go a long way to convincing Torts he can be a part of the next great Flyers team.
Another example of a player getting hot recently, Travis Sanheim followed up his two-goal outing against Florida with a great feed to Scott Laughton against the Wild. With an eight year contract kicking in next season, Sanheim is a player the Flyers desperately need to find his game again and, like Farabee, a strong finish down the stretch would convince folks that this poor season was a fluke.
A powerplay goal? In this economy?? Sure, why not, Ristgoalainen.
This will be the fourth game for the Red Wings’ 2021 sixth overall pick Simon Edvinsson. In his first three games, Edvinsson has a goal and a somewhat outrageous CF% of 59.5. It’s a small sample size, of course, but a lot is riding on Edvinsson turning into a top-pairing defenseman who can play alongside Seider as the Red Wings inch closer to contention.
Puck drop is at 1 p.m. from the Wells Fargo Center.