The Philadelphia Flyers defense needs to shut down the Los Angeles Kings centerman as the two teams meet this evening.
Following a rather disappointing 4-1 loss to the Montreal Canadiens in their last contest, the Philadelphia Flyers will continue on this three-game homestand by hosting the Los Angeles Kings at the Wells Fargo Center. If you can recall, the Flyers dropped the first meeting between the two squads, finishing out the past decade with a 5-3 loss to the Kings on New Year’s Eve. It’d be really swell if the Orange and Black could do the exact opposite this time around and take care of business against a team they’re better than on paper. That miiiiiiight be a bit too much to ask, though.
Anywho, one way Philadelphia can give themselves the best opportunity at a W is doing everything in their power to stop Anze Kopitar from doing Anze Kopitar things. The two-time Stanley Cup and Selke Trophy winner far and away leads Los Angeles in scoring, posting 43 points (17 Goals, 26 Assists) in 49 games on the season thus far. For reference, Tyler Toffoli, who’s the next closest player, has 27 points on the year, which is a pretty substantial difference, to say the least. The Kings have also gone 5-12-3 in games where Kopitar fails to register a point, showing just how vital he’s been to Los Angeles’ success, or lack thereof, this year. If the Flyers can find a way to shut him down, there’s a reasonable chance they’ll walk away from this matchup with a W.
As far as who’s starting in-net, Brian Elliott will get the nod from Alain Vigneault in this one and aim for his 11 win of the season. Justin Braun is also set to make his return from injury, giving the Flyers a defensive boost for this contest.
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Puck drop is set for 7 pm EST. You can watch the game on NBC Sports Philadelphia or Fox Sports-West.