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Pens-Flyers get Saturday off to early start

Saturday, 10.16.2010 / 1:40 AM / Game Previews

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Pens-Flyers get Saturday off to early start
At usual, Saturday is a busy one in the NHL. The Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers are getting the evening off to an early start.

The Pennsylvania rivals meet for the second time this season when the Penguins come to the Wells Fargo Center for a game that's set to start at 6 p.m. ET -- an hour earlier that usual. The game was moved up to avoid (as much as possible) a conflict with the NL Championship Series game between the Phillies and San Francisco Giants that's being played across the street.

The Flyers are coming off a 3-2 home loss to Tampa Bay on Thursday, while the Penguins won for the first time in four games at the new Consol Energy Center, beating the New York Islanders 3-2 in overtime.

Four more games start at 7 p.m. ET.

The Islanders go back home to host the Colorado Avalanche, which began a swing through the metropolitan area with a 3-2 win at New Jersey on Friday. The Devils will try to bounce back when they host Boston, which is playing its first game since splitting a pair against Phoenix in Prague last Sunday as part of the Compuware NHL Premiere series.

Florida comes home after three games in Western Canada for its home opener against Tampa Bay. The Panthers won the getaway game 3-0 in Calgary on Thursday. Also at 7, the Montreal Canadiens, 2-1 winners at Buffalo on Friday, host Ottawa.

At 8 p.m. ET, the Washington Capitals make a rare trip to Nashville, where the Predators are off to a 3-0-0 start, and Columbus, a 5-2 loser at home to Chicago on Friday, visits Minnesota. The Wild come off a 4-2 win over Edmonton in their home opener.

Like the Flyers, the Dallas Stars tweaked their starting time to work around the baseball playoffs. With the Texas Rangers playing in the AL Championship Series, the Stars bumped their game against St. Louis back to 8:30 p.m. ET. Dallas is coming off a 4-1 win over Detroit in its home opener on Thursday, the same night the Blues lost 4-3 at Nashville.

Also at 8:30, the Blackhawks come home for a game against Buffalo. The teams are meeting for the second time this week, and the game will mark the return of Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson, who was suspended for two game following a boarding penalty in the game on Monday at Buffalo that KO'd Sabres forward Jason Pominville with a concussion.

A half-hour later, the Phoenix Coyotes play their home opener when they host the Detroit Red Wings, the team that knocked them out of the playoffs last spring.

At 10 p.m. ET, the Battle of Alberta resumes in Calgary, where the Flames will try to atone for a season-opening 4-0 loss to the Oilers. The last game of the night begins at 10:30 p.m., when the Atlanta Thrashers are the guests for San Jose's home opener. The Sharks haven't played since splitting two NHL Premiere games against Columbus in Stockholm last weekend. The Thrashers come to San Jose after a 5-4 shootout win at Anaheim on Friday.
Quote of the Day

When we started our journey we made a commitment to our fans to be relevant and to see the Chicago Blackhawks become the best professional hockey organization. There are not two finer symbols of that than Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. The commitment we have made to these incredible young men is equal to the commitment they have made to our team, our fans, our entire organization and the city of Chicago.

— Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz on signing Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane to contract extensions