Where do we even begin, as the hours countdown to the second and final meeting of the season between the Kings and Flyers? Many of the storylines have been well documented over the past few seasons, so let’s try to stay current. Although we had Philadelphia as the team coming out of the Eastern Conference this season, they have looked like anything but an elite team over the first two months of the season. However, after seeing them in person on Wednesday night – which for what it’s worth, we still believe is the best gauge of a team – we can officially report that the demise of the Flyers has been greatly exaggerated. There is still a lot to like on that roster, especially among the forwards. Luke Schenn has taken plenty of abuse from fans and media, but those who track team closely say he hasn’t been the issue on defense, simply the latest focal point to direct frustration.
Back in October, the teams played a highly entertaining game in Philadelphia that ended 3-2 in overtime. However, it came off kind of flat after Brayden Scheen’s game-winning goal had to be reviewed and nobody was really sure what was going on. Perhaps the best part of it all was Schenn jumping up and down celebrating right after the play happened and Drew Doughty standing right in front of him, waving his arms back and forth to indicate no-goal.
To help us tee up this afternoon tilt, we once again invited David Strehle, Philadelphia correspondent at The Fourth Period Magazine, to join us for some Puck Probability. Here are more than a dozen things we think just might happen before the final buzzer sounds…
Odds by MayorsManor:
2:1 – Ian Laperriere will tear up when he is shown on the video board and then given a loud ovation by the crowd.
4:1 – Justin Williams or Mike Richards score the first goal of the game.
6:1 – Dave Schultz’s penalty record will be brought up at least once during the LA broadcast.
8:1 – Drew Doughty scores the game-winner in overtime.
12:1 – Given the Flyers propensity for taking penalties, the Kings will capitalize with three power play goals.
23:1 – Dustin Brown has his second consecutive multi-goal game.
27:1 – Alec Martinez leads all players in total ice time.
33:1 – Brayden McNabb scores his first goal as a King.
133:1 – Jamie McBain assists on that McNabb goal.
245:1 – Robyn Regehr ends the game with a plus-minus rating of plus-5 or higher.
5000:1 – Dean Lombardi and Ron Hextall will be the two contestants competing in the frozen shirt contest between periods.
Odds by David Strehle:
1:1 – Philadelphia will appear as if their skates are stuck in cement for long stretches of play, and their goaltender will once again be called upon to come up huge just to keep them from being blown right out of the building.
2:1 – At least one ex-Flyer (Justin Williams, Mike Richards, Jeff Carter) will score a goal against their former team. It’s happened in three of the four meetings between the clubs since Richards and Carter left Philly, with the one exception being the club’s last trip to L.A. in February, when Steve Mason made 35 saves in a 2-0 shutout.
10:1 – Wayne Simmonds will score multiple goals against his former-teammates. He’s scored goals in bunches since his arrival in 2011, and this season has been no different with five of his 10 goals coming during an early three-game span. Simmonds had gone five straight without lighting the lamp before netting two Wednesday against the Ducks, so it should follow suit that the ‘Wayne Train’ is ready for another big performance.
50:1 – A goal will be scored in the last minute of regulation to either tie things up or win the game. It’s happened in each of the first two stops on this west coast swing, with the Flyers yielding a goal with 11 seconds left in a 2-1 loss at SJ, and Simmonds scoring with just over 2 ticks of the clock remaining to send their contest with Anaheim to OT.
75:1 – Brayden Schenn will score an overtime-winner against the team that dealt him away, just like he did in the only other meeting between these teams this season, a 3-2 Flyers win at home on October 28.
100:1 – The Flyers will win a game that is not played in either the Wells Fargo Center or CONSOL Energy Center (ignoring the law of averages, this number keeps increasing with every road loss). It’s been a string of nine consecutive Philly road outings that have ended in defeat — 0-7-2 since an October 22 triumph in Pittsburgh — and a horrendous 2-9-2 away mark for the season.
500:1 – R.J. Umberger will not only record a point in a second consecutive game after going 17 in a row without managing either a goal or an assist, he’ll post his second Gordie Howe hat trick of the season, with the first coming in the Flyers’ last road win.
1,000:1 – Craig Berube’s revolving carousel of healthy scratches will see Claude Giroux, Jake Voracek, and Mark Streit taking a seat in the Staples Center press box.
5,000:1 – The Flyers win in a shootout if one is required. The worst-ever team in the tie-breaking skills competition has dropped all four this year, and have not won in their past nine shootouts dating back to last year. Philly’s goal-scoring problems extend to this avenue, where they’ve managed just two goals (Giroux and Couturier) in their 13 shootout attempts this season.
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