For the second time is just a week, the Tampa Bay Lightning will be facing off against the Philadelphia Flyers. The Lightning beat the Flyers earlier this past Thursday in a tight 4-3 shootout win, giving Tampa Bay a much needed two points.
The Lightning sit third in the Atlantic division with a 10-4-3 record, and the Flyers sit at sixth in the Metro division with an 8-5-3 record. Both teams have had their struggles this season, but the Flyers have just recently started to struggle in the last few weeks, with multiple players added to injury reserve.
For the Lightning, we will go back to talking about the top three players by points, as it has been a while since we’ve done that. They have stayed the same, but the totals have changed and really reflected on how well the team has played, especially these three players.
Steven Stamkos: 9G 10A 19P
Alex Killorn: 7G 10A 17P
Victor Hedman: 3G 14A 17P
The Lightning offense has been on fire for the last few weeks and it’s only getting hotter. Even with Brayden Point out of the lineup, the Lightning proved that they don’t need him to win as they defeated the Minnesota Wild on Sunday night without both Point and Nikita Kucherov.
The defense has been solid, and while it may seem like it’s been bad because of the start to the season, it’s gotten so much better through the last few weeks. Hedman is once again looking like a Norris Trophy nominee, and the depth on defense has been on display especially with some injuries hitting the back end in the last couple weeks.
Now for Philadelphia’s top players, who have been a bit of a surprise so far this season, but have really helped the Flyers compete in a strong Metropolitan division.
Claude Giroux: 7G 9A 16P
Sean Couturier: 5G 8A 13P
Derick Brassard: 4G 7A 11P
The offense for the Flyers has been lackluster to say the least this season. A big reason for this has been injuries that the Flyers have suffered this season. Most notably, Kevin Hayes, returned a several nights ago and then reaggravated his abdominal injury, keeping him out week-to-week.
The defense has been as steady for the Flyers, with the defense being a main reason why the Flyers have been able to win so many games. While offense has been just okay, the defense has been putting the team on their shoulders.
Andrei Vasilevskiy should return to net on Tuesday night for the Lightning. Vasilevskiy currently sits on a 2.38 GAA and .917sv% . Carter Hart, who is having a comeback season, will more than likely start in net for the Flyers. Hart currently sits on a 2.25 GAA and .932sv%.
Shots: 34 Lightning/29 Flyers
Score: 4-1 Lightning
Top Performer: Alex Barre-Boulet (0G 2A 2P)
Overall Performance: A
The reasoning is as simple as the Lightning are better on paper than the Flyers, and with both teams facing injuries, the Flyers are facing it with less depth than the Lightning. IT will be hard for them to compete against a Lightning team full of underrated future stars and the best goaltender on the planet.