Preview: Flyers at Blues
The reigning Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues hope to make more history when they go after a franchise-record 10th straight victory on home ice Wednesday night against the Philadelphia Flyers. St. Louis outscored opponents 36-15 during its home streak, which equaled the previous single-season team record set in 1991, after knocking off Anaheim 4-1 on Monday for its fourth straight win.
“We’ve been going pretty good,” Blues forward Jaden Schwartz told the St. Louis Dispatch. “It’s tough to keep track when you play on the road, so it’s not something you really think about, but we’re finding different ways to win and each night, different lines, different guys are chipping in, whether offensively or defensively. Both goalies are kicking. Doing the little things right, playing well as a team.” St. Louis, which entered Tuesday tied with Washington for the most points in the league (67), won both meetings with the Flyers last season and put up seven goals in the victory at the Enterprise Center. Philadelphia rebounded from a shutout loss to red-hot Tampa Bay by rallying from a three-goal deficit to beat Boston 6-5 in a shootout as co-leading scorer Travis Konecny got the deciding tally. “It’s a big positive for us,” Konecny told reporters. “We went through a little stretch where we were struggling, so to come back against a team like this, it puts us right up there and we know we can win against these (top) teams.”
TIME: 8 p.m. ET. TV: NBC Sports Network, TVA
ABOUT THE FLYERS (24-16-6): Travis Sanheim scored his second goal of the game and third in four outings to tie it in the third period Monday and coach Alain Vigneault told reporters of the defenseman: “He’s real effective when he moves up in the play. He’s just scratching the surface with that potential.” Center Sean Couturier has recorded three goals along with six assists in six January games to match Konecny for the team lead at 39 points. Right wing Jakub Voracek has not scored in 10 games, but owns a team-high 28 assists and ranks third on the team with 36 points while center Kevin Hayes is tied with Konecny for the top spot in goals (14).
ABOUT THE BLUES (30-10-7): Left wing David Perron saw his four-game goal streak come to an end Monday, but has scored 20 times and leads St. Louis with 46 points to earn a spot on the All-Star Game next week. Ryan O’Reilly is tied for second on the team in points (40) with fellow forward Brayden Schenn, who has registered six assists in his last four contests. Jake Allen (8-3-3, .926 save percentage) made 20 saves for the win Monday, but All-Star Jordan Binnington (22-7-4, .917 SP) will likely get the call against the Flyers after winning nine of his previous 10 starts while allowing two or fewer goals seven times.
1. Philadelphia’s backup G Brian Elliott (9-5-3, .896 SP) is expected to get the start Wednesday while G Carter Hart left practice Tuesday with a lower-body injury.
2. St. Louis D Colton Parayko (upper body) is close to returning to the lineup after missing the last five contests.
3. Flyers LW James van Riemsdyk (12 goals) snapped an eight-game point drought with an assist Monday.
PREDICTION: Blues 4, Flyers 2