Game Preview: Flyers vs. Sabres

Flyers' Carter Hart and Travis Konecny
Philadelphia Flyers’ Carter Hart and Travis Konecny celebrate after an NHL hockey game against the Florida Panthers, Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

The Philadelphia Flyers (4-4-1) are playing inspired hockey. Head coaches across the NHL aren’t surprised.

A spirited battle versus the Carolina Hurricanes is encouraging, but the season isn’t about phyrric victories.

“I think we all have to keep it in perspective of where we’re at here, too. I’m not going to stand up here all year long and talk about moral victories, but I gotta’ God damn remember where we are as far as where in the organization and the process that we’re at. I’m certainly not going to boo the team. I’m going to try to help ’em.”

John Tortorella; 10/30/2023

They host the Buffalo Sabres (4-5-0) at the Wells Fargo Center. John Tortorella has variations of his lineups competing hard to start the season. Can they find the win column on home ice again before visiting on Friday?

Buffalo Sabres

Riding a wave of momentum, the Sabres earned a shutout victory against the Colorado Avalanche on Monday. Don Granato challenged his team to be adamant about winning during the morning skate. Buffalo has yet to win consecutive games, and the Flyers hadn’t had a streak, winning or losing, extend longer than two games.

“John [Tortorella] is a hell of a coach and has a reputation of [being] ‘not fun to play against.’ They’re always ready to play, they’re always ready to compete, they’re definitely better than they were a year ago, and playing much more assertive; better as a group, as a team. It’ll be a challenge tonight for us.”

Don Granato; 11/1/2023

Brandon Biro will be in the lineup. It’ll be the second game of his NHL career, and first since the 2021-2022 season.

“It’s really exciting. It’s pretty disappointing last year, getting hurt and missing out on it. [I’m] just excited to be here and ready for the opportunity.”

Brandon Biro; 10/31/2023

Here’s the tentative lineup for the Buffalo Sabres:

Greenway-Thompson-Biro
Skinner-Mittelstadt-Peterka
Jost-Cozens-Tuch
Girgensons-Krebs-Okposo

Dahlin-Samuelsson
Power-Jokiharju
Johnson-Bryson

Luukkonen
(Levi)

Philadelphia Flyers

Tortorella isn’t making a change to the lineup. The effort from Philadelphia replicated their competitiveness against the Vegas Golden Knights. Closing a game versus top teams in the NHL is a tall task. It’s critical, like rebounding versus teams when the odds favor.

“Very similar to Vegas. Late in the game, something we don’t have to do, but it happens. All we can do is take these as learning moments and try to get better in situations. As the game went on, I thought we took the game over. They put a lot of time into it, and to come up empty; for athletes that have to do this stuff on the ice, it’s deflating.”

John Tortorella; 10/31/2023

Travis Konecny remains all over the ice, visible during even-strength and powerplay situations. He forces takeaways by backchecking and forechecking, creating quality scoring chances from high-percentage shooting areas. Konecny joins Sean Couturier, Bobby Brink, Cam Atkinson, and Travis Sanheim on the first powerplay unit. They have to convert chances, ranked 25th in the NHL with a 12.5% success rate, after finishing 0/5 versus the Hurricanes.

Here’s the tentative lineup for the Philadelphia Flyers:

Tippett-Couturier-Atkinson
Konecny-Frost-Foerster
Farabee-Cates-Brink
Deslauriers-Laughton-Hathaway

Sanheim-York
Zamula-Walker
Seeler-Belpedio

Hart
(Ersson)

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Philadelphia Flyers (-108)
Buffalo Sabres (-112)
Travis Konecny over .5pts (-160)

Game Information

You can watch the Flyers host the Sabres at the Wells Fargo Center on TNT. The radio broadcast can be heard on 97.5 the Fanatic and Flyers Radio 24/7. The puck drops at 7pm.

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)