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FIVE THINGS: Flyers at San Jose Sharks

by Staff Writer / Philadelphia Flyers

T he Flyers begin their trip out to the west coast facing all three California teams in a span of five days… Last season, the Flyers went 2-1-0, dropping the first to Anaheim before beating LA & San Jose… Over the last five seasons, the Flyers have come away with a combined record of 8-5-2 against the California teams with their most success coming in LA (4-0-1) (SJS: 1-3-1 & ANH: 3-2-0)… Against the Western Conference, the Flyers own a 4-2-1 record… This is just the third game on the road against a Western Conference opponent - the Flyers are 1-1-0 with a win at Dallas and loss at Chicago .

T his is the first of two meetings on the year between the two clubs - they split last year’s season series with each team winning on each other’s home ice… The series also saw a combined 17 goals scored in the two games (PHI: 8, SJS: 9)… Last season’s win saw a 15-year losing skid end in San Jose for the Flyers, whose previous win came in 1999… The Flyers come in looking to snap a four-game losing streak and seven-game winless streak on the road… The Flyers have not dropped five straight since Mar. 31-Apr. 8, 2011… The Flyers have played five of their last eight games on the road and will play 12 of their next 16 games away from the Wells Fargo Center… The Sharks won their last game, 6-4 over Anaheim, which snapped a four-game losing skid, but have dropped seven of their last 10 games, posting a 3-5-2 record in that span .

J akub Voracek posted a goal and assist in his last game, which leaves him in second place overall in the NHL scoring race at 32 points and second with 23 assists through 23 games… Voracek has recorded a point in every Flyers game in which the team has not been shut out (19 of 23)… The Sharks have four players who have 20 or more points so far this season (Pavelski, Marleau, Thornton & Couture), while defenseman Brent Burns is close by with 19 points… Joe Pavelski has six goals and nine points in eight career games against the Flyers, while Claude Giroux has eight points (4g-4a) in seven career games against the Sharks… The Sharks have an unusually successful record when their opponent out-shoots them, going 6-2-2 this season… The Sharks have played more games against Eastern Conference teams (14, 5-7-2), compared to their own conference (6-3-2)… The Flyers have seven of their eight victories on the year when they lead after the first period, going 7-0-1 .

Although scoreless on the season, and his NHL career, Laughton has seen his share of scoring chances as of late and, since his first two games of the season, he has seen his ice-time increase from an average of 8:56 in those two games, to nearly seven minutes more at an average of 15:40 in his last five games, including time on the team’s power play… Other than his first game of the season, Laughton has recorded at least a shot on goal in every game since, including four games in which he had three shots, and a total of seven shots on net in his last three games… Laughton could have new line mates in the game after practicing with Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds on Monday.

T he former 9th overall pick (2007) by the Sharks is tied for the team lead with 10 goals and 21 points in 24 games… He has been the hottest Sharks player as of late after posting a two-goal night in a 6-4 win over Anaheim on Saturday and has at least a point in four of his last five games, recording three goals and five points in that stretch… He is second among all forwards on the team in ice-time per-game (19:18) and leads the team in shots on goal (86)… In four career games against the Flyers, Couture has three points, all of which are goals.

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