Since the holiday break, the Philadelphia Flyers are 6-1-0 on the road. They soundly clipped the Detroit Red Wings at Little Caesars Arena, 2-1. Carter Hart was stellar between the pipes, blocking 31 shots in front of him, including two spectacular saves in the third period.
The Flyers are hoping to sweep a back-to-back for the first time in the 2022-2023 season. They’ll host the Winnipeg Jets.
The Jets come to the Wells Fargo Center following a 5-1 victory versus the Ottawa Senators. A massive win by Philadelphia moves them closer to a wildcard berth in the first season of a rebuild. It’ll be the first of two meetings between the clubs this season, the other to take place on the road.
Winnipeg Jets (30-16-1)
Here’s the projected lineup for the Winnipeg Jets:
Mark Scheifele (28G, 15A) was on fire for the Jets versus Ottawa. He posted two goals and an assist in the win, but he isn’t the only weapon. Josh Morrissey (+7, 67BLK, 39GV, 55%CF) and Kyle Connor (23G, 33A) are bringing their own credentials to the ice. Morrisey is playing the best hockey of his career, and Connor has four points (2G, 2A) in his last five games. Nikolaj Ehlers (4G, 12A) is back after missing 36 games with an abdominal injury, and he’s cooking. He has six points (2G, 4A) in his last five games, including a three-point performance versus the Senators.
Winnipeg is diversifying its business. They’re in the business of scoring goals and stopping them too.
Statistics show the Jets score on average 3.6 goals per game while allowing 2.6 goals against. Second in the NHL Central Division, they’re 7-3-0 in their last ten games. On the road, they’re a little more vulnerable, a little better than mediocre with a 13-10-1 record. Compare that to at home, where the Jets are 17-6-0.
On special teams, Winnipeg is incredibly effective. They are among the elite on the penalty kill, ranking second in the NHL. On the powerplay, they rank seventh. They’ll pressure the Flyers into playing perfectly or suffer the consequences.
Philadelphia Flyers (20-20-7)
The Flyers had more ‘Hart,’ if you will, outlasting the Red Wings on the back of their starting goaltender. The defense succeeded in the dirty areas, showing their grit. Ivan Provorov (-7, 113BLK, 41GV, 43.1%CF) put his body on the line, making a key block on a shot. After losing themselves versus Chicago, it was a tough and physical win for the Broad Street Boys.
The usual suspects on the scoring sheet feature Travis Konecny, Scott Laughton, Noah Cates, and Kevin Hayes. Konecny (24G, 25A) could collect his fiftieth point of the 2022-2023 season. Laughton (12G, 16A) began the scoring in Detroit, and Cates (6G, 12A) notched the game-winner. Hayes (13G, 28A) formerly played for Winnipeg at a time in his career and is in the midst of his first NHL All-Star season.
Mental toughness and fatigue will play a critical factor between the two clubs, both in the second half of a back-to-back. Philadelphia and Winnipeg had hefty schedules in the last week, playing a handful of games. This tilt could be decided in the third period. John Tortorella conditioned his roster during training camp for times like these.
Place Your Bets
Winnipeg Jets moneyline (-165)
Philadelphia Flyers moneyline (+140)
Kyle Connor o1.5pts (+170)
Travis Konecny o.5pts (-225)
You can watch the Philadelphia Flyers host the Winnipeg Jets at 7pm on NBC Sports Philadelphia. The radio broadcast is available on 97.5 the Fanatic.
(Photo by Chris Kohley/Icon Sportswire)