(SportsNetwork.com) - The Philadelphia Flyers will try to win back-to-back
games for the first time this season when they visit the New York Islanders
for Saturday's Metropolitan Division battle at Nassau Coliseum.
The Flyers are 2-7-0 on the season, but they ended a four-game slide with
Thursday's victory over the visiting New York Rangers. Despite the 2-1 win,
Philadelphia has yet to score more than two goals in any game this season,
setting a franchise record for the longest stretch with two goals or less to
begin a campaign.
Braydon Coburn's goal 3:33 into the third period was the difference in
Thursday's win over the Rangers, who were playing without key players like
star goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and forwards Rick Nash and Ryan Callahan. The
Flyers fired 27 shots at Rangers goaltender Cam Talbot, who made 25 saves and
helped keep Philly off the board in all four of their power-play
Flyers goaltender Steve Mason continued his strong play, stopping 30-of-31
shots, including all 10 he faced in the final period. Matt Read assisted on
Coburn's game-winner and tallied a shorthanded goal earlier in the contest.
Coburn drilled a shot from near the blue line that rocketed past Talbot with
Philadelphia's Wayne Simmonds setting a screen in front.
"We've got guys like Wayne screening the goalie and causing havoc in there, so
you know as long as you can get the pucks through, things can happen," said
The Flyers had Vincent Lecavalier back in the lineup on Thursday after a
three-game absence and fellow forward Scott Hartnell is expected to return
Saturday. Hartnell, who has no points in five games this season, sat out the
last four games with an upper body injury.
Saturday's contest also marks the first trip back to Long Island for Mark
Streit since the defenseman joined the Flyers during the offseason. Streit
served as captain during his time with the Islanders, but his rights were
traded to the Flyers last June, weeks before he was set to become an
unrestricted free agent.
Streit signed a four-year, $21 million deal with the Flyers, but has produced
just two assists in nine games this season.
The Flyers have won four of the last six meetings against the Islanders and
have built a 12-2-2 record in the past 16 encounters in this series. However,
Philadelphia had a seven-game road winning streak against the Isles halted
when it lost a 4-1 decision at the Coliseum on April 9 of last season.
New York is coming off a win on Friday night, as it posted a 4-3 regulation
decision in Pittsburgh. The victory was just the second in the last seven
games (2-3-3) for the Islanders.
Josh Bailey scored with 1:40 remaining in the third period to lift the Isles
to the win over the Penguins at CONSOL Energy Center. Frans Nielsen registered
a goal and two assists, while Evgeni Nabokov stopped 39 Pittsburgh shots,
including 19 in the second period.
One-goal games have been the norm for New York this season. Nine of its first
10 games have been decided by the slimmest of margins.
"As the game went along, we felt like we could score a goal, be right back in
the game and then turn the table on them," Nabokov said. "We didn't quit. We
put the puck at the net, and good things happened."
The Isles, who are 2-1-3 as the host, are playing the first of two straight on
home ice tonight and will welcome the New York Rangers on Tuesday.
New York forward Michael Grabner will be available Friday after serving a two-
game suspension for delivering an illegal check to Carolina's Nathan Gerbe in
last Saturday's loss to the Hurricanes.
The Sports Network