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OTF: Lyubimov re-enters the lineup

News & Notes from the morning skate in Calgary

by @NHLFlyers

Following the Flyers morning skate at the Saddledome in Calgary, there was one change to the lineup to come out of the media sessions. Forward Roman Lyubimov will re-enter the lineup after sitting out the last game vs. San Jose.

Lyubimov was taking part in line rushes at the skate alongside Chris VandeVelde and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, a duo that he has been quite familiar with and playing with most of the season when he has been in the lineup. Coming out will be forward Dale Weise.

"It's a good opportunity for him to go in there and we know that line will be a good, reliable line here on the road," said Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol on Lyubimov.

Lyubimov also played well in the first meeting with the Flames on Nov. 27, recording a goal and an assist along with a season and career-high four shots on goal.

Michal Neuvirth was first off the ice at the skate, so it is expected for him to get the call in net. Neuvirth has gone 3-1-1 in his last five starts, posting a 1.20 goals-against average and .946 save percentage. 

On the opposing side, the game is just as important to the Flames, who are in a desperate wild card race of their own in the West. The Flyers fully expect a tough, competitive game from Calgary, who dropped their last contest, 5-0, to the Arizona Coyotes on home ice.

"There's a lot of challenges there. They're a team that's right in the hunt and right in the battle themselves," added Hakstol. "They play a fast game. They have pretty good balance when you look at some of the scoring through their forward lines and there's no doubt that their defense bring a big challenge in terms of being up in the play."

"It's an important game for us. We need to bounce back," said Flames forward and south-jersey native, Johnny Gaudreau, to reporters this morning. "That first game back from the break wasn't the way we wanted to start the second half of the season here so I think the guys realize that we need to put that behind us and go from there."

The Flames confirmed that Brian Elliott will get the start in goal. Elliott owns three of the last four victories for Calgary and has an overall mark of 11-13-2 with a 2.85 GAA and .895 save percentage. He did not face the Flyers in the first meeting of the season, but owns a lifetime mark of 6-4-0 with three shutouts and a 2.22 GAA and .927 sv pct.

Puck drop is 9:30 p.m. ET on TCN or listen live on 93.3 WMMR. For more check out the game's 5 Things to Know…

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