Get your game notes: Flyers at Penguins

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Tonight on NBCSN, it’s the Pittsburgh Penguins hosting the Philadelphia Flyers starting at 8 p.m. ET. Following are some game notes, as compiled by the NHL on NBC research team:

• The Penguins led the NHL in goals per game in 2011-12 (3.33) and 2012-13 (3.38). However, scoring is down half a goal (2.88, T-10th) through 17 games of the 2013-14 season. Three of their most dependable goal-scorers are in the midst of significant goal droughts:

Sidney Crosby: 7 games (longest since a career-long 12-game drought, 11/23/11 – 3/22/12)
Evgeni Malkin: 10 games (longest since a career-long 11-game drought, 12/27/09 – 1/14/10)
Pascal Dupuis: 11 games (longest since a 17-game drought, 12/29/11 – 2/5/12)

• Crosby has registered at least one point in 193 of 246 (78.5%) career regular-season games in Pittsburgh. In total, he has 382 points (1.55 points/game) at home.

• The Flyers have scored the fewest goals (31) in the NHL, at a rate of 1.82 per game (29th in the NHL). They have scored two or fewer goals in all but three of their 17 games. Their franchise-lows in each category came in their first two seasons: 173 goals (1967-68) and 2.29 goals per game (1968-69).

• Since the 2004-05 lockout, only three active goaltenders have more wins on home ice in the regular season than the Penguins’ Marc-Andre Fleury. (Note: Recently-retired Calgary goalie Miikka Kiprusoff tops the below-mentioned, with 174 wins.) (Elias Sports Bureau)
1. Roberto Luongo, Vancouver – 163
2. Henrik Lundqvist, N.Y. Rangers – 162
3. Martin Brodeur, New Jersey – 154
4. Fleury, Pittsburgh – 149

• Fleury has 68 wins in his last 100 regular-season starts (68-26-4), the most by an active goaltender in the NHL. Only Ray Emery (tonight’s possible goalie for the Flyers), Tim Thomas, Corey Crawford (all 59), Henrik Lundqvist and Roberto Luongo (58) have more than 58 wins during that span.

• In the Modern Era (1967-present), 212 different players have accumulated 200 or more penalty minutes in a single season. 26 did so for the Flyers (the most by any team) and 13 did so for the Penguins. Two – Dave Schultz and Rick Tocchet – did so for both teams.

• The spirit of the “Broad Street Bullies” apparently lives in Philadelphia. Since 2008-09, the Flyers have led the NHL in number of penalties four times, and in total penalty minutes three times.

source:

Ducks cement Pacific lead as Getzlaf continues his mammoth March

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By the end of Sunday night, the Anaheim Ducks removed all doubt: they’re on top of the Pacific Division.

Now, it’s not the sort of substantial lead that the sliding San Jose Sharks squandered; Anaheim merely leads the Sharks and Edmonton Oilers by two standings points after beating the New York Rangers 6-3.

With everyone at 75 games played, it’s kind of nice to enjoy the clarity that comes with a clear lead (though the Sharks and Oilers will disagree):

Pacific top four (all teams with 75 games played)

1. Ducks – 93 points (38 ROW, 41 W)
2. Sharks – 91 poitns (40 ROW, 42 W)
3. Oilers – 91 points (37 ROW, 41 W)

Flames – 88 points (38 ROW, 42 W)

The Ducks are now on a four-game winning streak and managed an 8-1-1 mark in their last 10 contests.

With all due respect to Patrick Eaves‘ two goals, it’s Ryan Getzlaf who’s really playing outstanding hockey. He generated four assists in this one, giving him eight helpers in his past four games. He now has a whopping 20 points in March.

A lot going on – fight included – between Corey Perry, Brendan Smith (Video)

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If there’s one thing that’s undeniable from the clip going on, it’s that Corey Perry and Brendan Smith squeezed a lot of activity (carnage?) into a single shift.

Early on in Sunday’s New York Rangers – Anaheim Ducks game, both player delivered hits that were at least borderline dangerous. After that, they traded punches in a pretty solid fight (especially since they seemed a little tired because, again, this was a fairly elaborate sequence).

It’s way too messy a sequence to call neat, but there is something efficient about trading hits and then getting into a fight. That’s a mini-hockey feud in short order.

If you want a pretty moment to counteract all that, check out the great puck movement on this 3-on-1 goal for the Rangers:

Penguins lose to Flyers and lose another key player to injury

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PITTSBURGH — Even with a ridiculously long injured list that would be the foundation of a pretty good hockey team, the Pittsburgh Penguins still found a way to go 8-1-3 in their previous 12 games entering Sunday’s contest against the Philadelphia Flyers.

The injuries finally seemed to start catching up to them on Sunday in a 6-2 loss, extending their current losing streak to three games, matching their season long.

While the loss certainly impacts their pursuit of the top spot in the Metropolitan Division (they remain three points back of the Washington Capitals), and even their quest for home ice advantage in the first round, it is still not the worst thing to come out of Sunday’s game.

The worst thing for them would be the fact the Penguins lost yet another key player to an injury when forward Conor Sheary had to leave the game mid-way through the first period.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said after the game that Sheary is dealing with a lower body injury and that right now he is considered to be day-to-day. It was initially believed that Sheary was injured blocking a shot, but Sullivan insisted that was not the case and that it happened in the offensive zone at some point in the first period.

With Jake Guentzel still sidelined due a concussion he suffered in a recent game against the Buffalo Sabres, that means two-thirds of the team’s recently assembled top line (Sidney Crosby-Sheary-Guentzel) is now sidelined due to injury. Sheary’s injury is especially concerning given how good he has been on Crosby’s wing dating back to the 2016 playoffs. Entering play on Sunday Sheary was averaging nearly a point per game (50 points in 54 games) with almost all of that production coming at even-strength.

They had yet another scare in the third period on Sunday when defenseman Brian Dumoulin had to briefly leave the game and head to the locker room after he was elbowed in the side of the head by Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds.

On Sunday, all of the injuries finally seemed to be too much with the Flyers pretty much dominating the game over the final two periods.

The Flyers received goals from six different players (Jordan Weal, Valtteri Filppula, Dale Weise, Jakob Voracek, Radko Gudas and Shayne Gostisbehere) in the win and outshot the Penguins by a 24-15 margin over the final 40 minutes.

“That wasn’t a good effort and at this point of the season we can’t afford to have those,” said Penguins forward Matt Cullen after the game. “I don’t think that was a typical effort for us. I don’t think we had a lot of life, to be honest.”

Even more than winning games the rest of the way the biggest concern for the Penguins has to be getting their list of injured players healthy and finding a way to avoid adding to it, something that has proven to be difficult in recent weeks.

At this point, whether they win the Metropolitan Division or not, they know their path through the Eastern Conference playoffs is very likely going to have to go through both Washington and Columbus, and they are going to need their full complement of players to do it.

One of the biggest factors in winning a Stanley Cup is having all of your key players in the lineup come playoff time.

A year ago the Penguins did.

Right now they are not even close to having that.

Video: Dumoulin shakes off elbow, Sheary out day-to-day for Penguins

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Barring a major comeback, the Pittsburgh Penguins look like they’re going to lose to the Philadelphia Flyers on Sunday. Their injury losses might be just as big.

On the bright side, it seems like Brian Dumoulin was able to shake off an elbow from Wayne Simmonds. You can watch the hit, which didn’t draw a penalty, in the video above.

Meanwhile, Conor Sheary has been missing since the first period with what might be a lower-body injury.

The Penguins’ list of injuries is already pretty ridiculous, so if one or both of these players miss significant time, tonight will sting deeper than a setback on the scoreboard.

Update after the Penguins’ loss: Seemingly good news, if very early and vague: