Fly­ers, seek­ing 10th straight win

Kuwait Times - - Sports -

PHILADEL­PHIA: The Philadel­phia Fly­ers will be look­ing to cap­ture their sea­son-high 10th con­sec­u­tive vic­tory when they host the Bos­ton Bru­ins to­day. Ex­tend­ing the streak to 10 will be quite a chal­lenge against the Bru­ins (43-14-12), who lead the league with 98 points.

The Fly­ers (41-20-7, 89 points) boast the best home mark in the league at 25-5-4.

Philadel­phia pushed its win­ning streak to nine with a 3-1 vic­tory over the Buf­falo Sabres on Satur­day. Sec­ond-year goal­tender Carter Hart made 38 saves and be­came the first goal­tender in league his­tory to com­pile two sep­a­rate win­ning streaks of seven or more at age 21 or younger.

“Hartsy made some huge stops, and we got lucky that we won,” Fly­ers winger Jakub Vo­racek told In­quirer.com about Hart. “In the end, you don’t ask (how), but we won. So, like I said, it’s a good two points, but we’ll need to be way bet­ter Tues­day.”

Claude Giroux scored two goals against the Sabres, and Vo­racek has been red hot with 10 as­sists over his past five games.

With James van Riems­dyk side­lined for at least four weeks due to a bro­ken ring fin­ger, 20-yearold rookie Joel Farabee stepped up and scored a goal to snap an eight-game drought.

“I didn’t think it was ever go­ing to come again, but ob­vi­ously it felt good,” Farabee said.

In the end, the Fly­ers have found a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ways to win dur­ing this spurt. The big­gest con­stant has been the stel­lar play of Hart, who is 20-2-2 with a 1.61 goals-against av­er­age at home this sea­son.

“Just play­ing the game and hav­ing fun,” Hart said. “That’s the big­gest thing for us right now. We’re en­joy­ing com­ing to the rink.”

The Bru­ins are com­ing off a rare loss, a 5-3 set­back against the Tampa Bay Light­ning on Satur­day.

David Pas­tr­nak did man­age to score his league­high 48th goal of the sea­son while Char­lie McAvoy added one goal and one as­sist. How­ever, Bos­ton gave up two short-handed goals in what was a feisty con­test with nu­mer­ous penal­ties and skir­mishes.

“That was a great game. A lot of phys­i­cal­ity and good plays at both ends of the ice,” goal­tender Tuukka Rask said. “Ob­vi­ously, it feels bet­ter when you come (out) as a win­ner, but I thought that was a great way to show our char­ac­ter — al­ways stick up for each other and just fell short.”

There were 26 penal­ties com­bined in the game, so it would be nat­u­ral to ex­pect the Bru­ins to ar­rive in Philadel­phia look­ing to avenge that loss.

“I think some of the stuff that we talk about was stick­ing to­gether, and I think as far as team chem­istry goes, we’re al­ready a re­ally tight group,” McAvoy told re­porters. “But you see guys an­swer the bell for each other re­gard­less of their size or role or any­thing and ev­ery­one steps up to make sure we have each other’s back. That’s some­thing where you look at it and you’re proud of one an­other.

“You know that’s the kind of hockey that you’re go­ing to run into down the road, so it’s nice to know ev­ery­one has each other’s back.”

The Bru­ins had won four in a row be­fore the Satur­day loss yet still proved their met­tle by com­ing back from an early three-goal deficit be­fore fall­ing short. — Reuters

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