By Kyle Shohara
The Ducks are in the City of Brotherly Love for tonight’s matchup against the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center.
In this, the fifth game of the club’s season-long eight-game, 15-day road trip, the Ducks look to jump on a struggling Flyers squad that’s only won two games (2-4-0) at home. However, Philadelphia enters tonight’s game on a two-game winning streak, with victories over the Rangers and Islanders, respectively, outscoring them 7-3 in those games.
The injury bug has been a major pest since preseason, but the sun broke through the clouds this morning when center Mathieu Perreault stepped onto the ice for the morning skate. Perreault suffered a sprained left wrist in Friday’s win over Ottawa and missed Sunday’s game in Columbus, but is a “game-time decision,” according to head coach Bruce Boudreau. Perreault said his wrist felt “really good” yesterday. Perreault’s been nails in the faceoff dot this year, ranking sixth in the league in faceoff win percentage (58.0%). In addition, his nine points (4g/5a) in 11 games places him third on the team’s scoring chart.
Jonas Hiller was the first goaltender off the ice this morning and will likely get the start in net. Hiller (4-2-0) will look to bounce back after a 4-1 loss in Montreal on October 24.
Dustin Penner skated with the team this morning, but is also a game-time decision, according to Boudreau.
Luca Sbisa (ankle) is hoping to play by either Saturday in Buffalo, or Monday in New York. Sbisa injured his ankle in the team’s first preseason game on September 16, and has yet to play in the regular season.
Matt Beleskey (hand) is expected to be ready for the team’s next road trip, beginning November 12 in Florida. Beleskey has played in two regular season games thus far (Oct. 2 at Colorado and Oct. 5 at Minnesota).
EXPECTED LINE COMBINATIONS
Tonight marks the first contest between the Ducks and Flyers at Wells Fargo Center in over three years. The two clubs last faced each other in Philadelphia on Oct. 21, 2010, a 3-2 Ducks win. Two subsequent contests have taken place, both at Honda Center. In the most recent contest at Honda Center on Dec. 2, 2011, Bruce Boudreau made his Ducks head coaching debut in a 4-3 overtime loss. The Ducks are 9-8-7 all-time vs. the Flyers, including a 4-4-3 mark in Philadelphia.
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