Flyers Handle Hawks 3-1 (12/3)

Yesterday afternoon the Philadelphia Flyers (13-10-3) extended their modest three-game win streak to four with an impressive 3-1 victory against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Hawks, playing without superstar center and captain Jonathan Toews and goalie Corey Crawford were handled quite easily by the Flyers once rookie Ivan Provorov scored twice in less than 30 seconds to give the Flyers a 2-1 lead in the second period.

From there, the Flyers wouldn’t look back. A trait that this Flyers team has shown so far this season is when they build a lead heading into the third period, they often have found themselves giving that lead up. Yesterday, however, the Flyers found a way to play a full 60-minute game and they were rewarded with the convincing and much needed two points.

Most of the legwork was done by goalie Steve Mason and the defense in yesterday’s win. The Flyers’ big guns were held off the scoresheet which is an encouraging┬ásign in the respect that they have shown they can win as a team when their best offensive players don’t register a point. It goes to show how much more depth and speed they have on offense this year and it’s going a long way into this team now starting to get on a roll.

The biggest thing, however, is Steve Mason. Since Michal Neuvirth went down with a knee injury he has settled himself back in as the go-to guy in net. The stability in goal has been the most important aspect of their current winning streak. Before Neuvirth’s injury, Dave Hakstol was basically throwing his goalies’ name into a hat and whatever one he grabbed out was who would get the nod for that game. Essentially he was waiting for one of the two to grab the reigns and be his go-to guy and Mason has taken full advantage of being the defacto guy due to Neuvirth’s injury.

Preview @ Predators 12/4

The Flyers waste no time getting right back into action as they travel to the Music City for a matchup against former bench boss Peter Laviolette’s Nashville Predators┬á(11-8-4). The puck is set to drop at 6:00pm and is televised on CSN Philadelphia.

As of right now, it looks to be Mason back in net, and not rookie Anthony Stolarz making his second career start on the heels of back to back games. Also, Radko Gudas, who missed yesterday’s matinee due to an illness, doesn’t look like he’ll be suiting up tonight. Which means everyone’s fan favorite Andy MacDonald will be back out there protecting the Flyers’ blueline once again.

The Predators have been close to flawless at home this year sporting an 8-1-2 record on home ice so this will be quite the challenge for the Flyers who are trying to make it five in a row tonight. The Preds did, however, play yesterday just like the Flyers and lost a devasting 5-4 game that went into overtime after they had built a 4-1 lead against the New Jersey Devils early on. So they will certainly be coming into this matchup against the Flyers with a vengeance.

So get ready for some Sunday night hockey after the Eagles season has virtually come to an end. Let’s go Flyers!

Projected Lineup

12 Michael Raffl – 28 Claude Giroux – 17 Wayne Simmonds
11 Travis Konecny – 10 Brayden Schenn – 93 Jakub Voracek
24 Matt Read – 78 P-E Bellemare – 22 Dale Weise
76 Chris VandeVelde – 25 Nick Cousins – 13 Roman Lyubimov

9 Ivan Provorov – 47 Andrew MacDonald
15 Michael Del Zotto – 32 Mark Streit
53 Shayne Gostisbehere – 23 Brandon Manning

35 Steve Mason / 41 Anthony Stolarz

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