When: Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Time: 7:00 p.m. CST
Where: MTS Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Records: Winnipeg Jets (5-5-1 – 10th in East), Philadelphia Flyers (5-7-1 – 11th in East)
Television/Radio: CSN-PHI, TSN-JETS/ TSN 1290
The Story: The Winnipeg Jets begin a three-game home stand tonight against the Philadelphia Flyers looking to once again make the MTS Centre a difficult arena to play in for visiting teams.
The Jets have been idle since Saturday afternoon’s 1-0 victory over the Ottawa Senators, which stopped a three game losing streak on the road. The Flyers, on the other hand, come into Winnipeg the day after losing to the Toronto Maple Leafs by a score of 5-2.
Heading into tonight’s game, the Jets are feeling like a pretty healthy bunch. On Monday morning, it was confirmed that Dustin Byuglien would return to the line-up after missing the last five games with an undisclosed lower-body injury. Additionally, Zach Bogosian returned to regular practice with the Jets on Sunday and is close to returning to action, possibly as early as Friday night versus the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Update: As per @GaryLawless of the Winnipeg Free Press, it looks like Grant Clitsome will come out of the line-up tonight to make room for Byfuglien.
Update II: As per Ken Wiebe of The Winnipeg Sun right before the game, Anthony Peluso will make his debut tonight for the Jets. Chris Thorburn will be a healthy scratch.
As far as tonight’s game is concerned, the Jets will be playing an angry Flyers team who wasn’t happy with their performance last night. Philadelphia has only won once on the road this year and they are desperately trying to stay relevant in the Eastern Conference playoff race. Newly appointed Captain Claude Giroux has struggled this year and has only seven points in thirteen games, far off of his 93 point pace from last season.
Today’s game is the first of three meetings between the Jets and Flyers this year. The next meeting between the two teams is next Saturday, February 23 in Philadelphia (12:00 p.m. CST). The third and final meeting of the season is in Winnipeg on Saturday, April 6th (2:00 p.m. CST).
Al Montoya is expected to start in goal for the Jets today.
Follow @IllegalCurve on Twitter leading up to tonight’s game.
Projected Jets line combinations (subject to change* before game time):
*as of Jets skate this morning, there are no expected lineup changes.
1st: Andrew Ladd- Bryan Little- Blake Wheeler
2nd: Evander Kane- Olli Jokinen- Alexander Burmistrov
3rd: Alexei Ponikarovsky – Nikolai Antropov- Kyle Wellwood
4th: James Wright- Jim Slater – Anthony Peluso
Tobias Enstrom- Dustin Byfuglien
Mark Stuart- Ron Hainsey
Paul Postma- Zach Redmond
Philadelphia Flyers: Matt Read (5 goals, 4 assists, 9 points), Jakub Voracek (3 goals, 5 assists, 8 points), Brayden Schenn (2 goals, 6 assists, 8 points)
Winnipeg Jets: Tobias Enstrom (2 goals, 11 assists, 13 points), Blake Wheeler (4 goals, 5 assists, 9 points), Andrew Ladd (4 goals, 5 assists, 9 points)
Philadelphia Flyers: Sean Couturier (illness), Michael Leighton (finger), Scott Hartnell (foot), Andrej Meszaros (upper body), Chris Pronger (concussion)
Winnipeg Jets: Zach Bogosian (wrist), Antti Miettinen (upper body)
Who’s Next: The Jets next play the Pittsburgh Penguins this Friday, February 15, 7:00 p.m. CST followed by a game versus Boston Bruins this Sunday, February 17 at 5:00 p.m. CST.
Quickies…… (courtesy of Kalen Qually of the Winnipeg Jets via Twitter) “Winnipeg had a record of 4-0-0 last season in first game following a one-game road trip”….. “The Jets were 9-2-1 last year hosting second game of back to backs. Only happens twice this year: tomorrow & Mar. 24 vs TB”……