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Flyers go for second straight as Coyotes visit

by Sean McCullen /

COYOTES (2-2-0) at FLYERS (1-3-0)


Season series: This is the first of two meetings between the Philadelphia Flyers and Phoenix Coyotes. The Flyers will travel to Glendale, Ariz., to face the Coyotes on Jan. 4, 2014. The teams have not played since Dec. 3, 2011, a 4-2 win for the Flyers in Glendale.

Big story: Each team needs to find its scoring touch after struggling offensively to start the season. Phoenix broke through a bit against the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday, scoring four goals, including an empty-netter, in a 4-2 victory. The Flyers have scored just five total goals in their first four games.

Team Scope:

Coyotes: Phoenix will play its second road game in as many nights and the fourth in a five-game trip.

Phoenix stepped up to captain Shane Doan's challenge after the New York Islanders routed the Coyotes 6-1 on Tuesday by beating the Red Wings in Detroit. Doan said he was "embarrassed" by the blowout loss, which led to a players-only meeting.

"To respond the way we did after two ugly ones is the way to go," said defenseman Michael Stone, who had the game-winning goal against the Red Wings.

Coach Dave Tippett was pleased with his players' bounce-back effort.

"The players competed as hard as they needed to compete to give ourselves a chance to win," he said.

Flyers: Philadelphia will play its second game under new coach Craig Berube. The Flyers held on to beat the Florida Panthers 2-1 at Wells Fargo Center on Tuesday night, giving Berube his first win one day after he was named to replace Peter Laviolette, who was fired Monday after an 0-3-0 start.

Captain Claude Giroux, who led the team with 48 points in 48 games in 2012-13, epitomizes the team's slow start. Giroux has not registered a single point so far, and he seemed at a loss to explain his struggles following the Flyers' win against Florida.

"It feels like I'm not enjoying [the game] right now. You go back to the basics, start playing a little more physical," Giroux told "I don't know. I'm sure I will figure it out."

Who's hot: Derek Morris scored a goal and added an assist in his return to the Coyotes' lineup Thursday against Detroit. The veteran defenseman, who was held out of the loss to the Islanders with an upper-body injury, has three points and is a plus-3 in three games. … Flyers goalie Steve Mason (1-2-0) stopped 33 of 34 shots he faced against Florida. He has a .935 save percentage and 2.02 goals-against average.

Injury report: Defenseman Rostislav Klesla (concussion) was activated off injured reserve for Phoenix on Thursday and made his season debut against the Red Wings. … The Flyers are healthy.

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