Tonight Ilya Bryzgalov will face his old team as the Philadelphia Flyers host the Phoenix Coyotes.
“I really appreciate everything they did for me,” he said. “I wish them the best. I’m really glad they are doing well without me because they deserve it. They work extremely hard. They have beautiful people in that organization — management and coaches and a good group of guys. I have lots of friends out there.”
The Flyers and Coyotes met one time last year in Philadelphia where the Coyotes won in overtime on a Shane Doan goal. This is the first of two meetings between the teams this year with the other matchup taking place on December 3.
Both teams are coming off of road wins as Philadelphia beat the Carolina Hurricanes 5-3 on Monday, and on Tuesday Phoenix beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2 in a shootout.
In net for Philadelphia is Brzygalov and for Phoenix it is Mike Smith , as always out starting goalie matchups are brought to us courtesy of puckinghockey.com.
3 Things to Watch For
1. Phoenix Doesn’t Miss Ilya Bryzgalov: When Phoenix traded Bryz in the offseason, a lot of people thought that would be the downfall for the Coyotes. Mike Smith has been nothing short of amazing in net posting an 8-2-3 record with a 2.19 GAA. He is also among the league leaders in save percentage with a .933, while Bryzgalov isn’t even in the top 30 with a .899. Smith signed a modest two-year, two-million dollar contract in the offseason coming over from the Tampa Bay Lightning.
2. Two of the Hottest Teams: Both teams have played hot as of late, Philadelphia is 5-0-2 in their last seven games. The Coyotes are 7-1-2 over their last ten, including starting their five-game road trip 2-0-0.
3. We’re Down a Man? Not a Problem: This game will feature two of the best PK units in the league this year. Phoenix is ranked eight and Philadelphia is ranked tenth with a 87.3% and 86.6% respectively. Both PKs have shutdown the opposition lately with the Coyotes killing 19/20 in their last eight games and the Flyers killing 30/31 in their last seven games.
Where and When to Watch
When: 7:00 PM EST