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Flyers host Devils, look to snap three-game skid

by Adam Kimelman /
DEVILS (8-15-2) at FLYERS (15-7-4)


Last 10 --
New Jersey 4-5-1; Philadelphia 5-3-2

Season series --
This is the second meeting in a week for the teams, which played last Saturday, with the Devils earning a 2-1 shootout victory at the Prudential Center.

Big Story -- The Flyers have lost three in a row to slip behind the red-hot Penguins in the Atlantic Division. Their high-powered offense has scored just three goals in those games, including none in their last game, a 3-0 shutout loss to the Bruins on Wednesday.

Team Scope:

Devils -- Just when New Jersey looked to be building a bit of momentum, it disappeared in 11 seconds Thursday. The Devils had won four straight at home and were coming off four days of rest following their shootout win over the Flyers on Saturday. But Brian Gionta's goal on the game's first shift started a five-goal avalanche that saw the Canadiens bury the Devils on home ice, 5-1.

"It's disappointing," coach John MacLean said after the game. "They outplayed us in every aspect of the game. They were prepared to play, we weren't."

Flyers -- In a search of offense, Flyers coach Peter Laviolette made wholesale changes to his forward lines, but while they piled up 41 shots against the Bruins on Wednesday, they couldn't put anything past goalie Tim Thomas.

One of the players lost in the line shuffle was Ville Leino, who has no points in his last three games and spent long stretches on the bench Wednesday.

"He tried different players at the end and I got some shifts off and obviously, I want to be out there," Leino told "I'm one of those players who needs ice time to play good."

Who's Hot --
Jason Arnott's goal Thursday gave him a team-leading 9 goals this season. He's on pace for 29 goals this season, which would be his 11th 20-goal season in the last 12. … Flyers forward Claude Giroux has just 1 point in his last five games, but he's been pretty hot in career against the Devils, with 1 goal and 8 points in eight games.

Injury Report -- Devils defenseman Matt Taormina is out with an ankle injury and goalie Martin Brodeur is sidelined with a bruised elbow. … Flyers forward Daniel Carcillo (knee) is skating but not ready for game action. Goaltender Michael Leighton (back) is with the AHL Adirondack Phantoms for a conditioning stint.

Stat Pack -- When Sergei Bobrovsky was named Rookie of the Month for November, it marked the second straight season a Flyer rookie had won the award for the second month of the season. Last November, James van Riemsdyk earned the honor.

Puck Drop --
Friday marked the one-year anniversary for Flyers coach Peter Laviolette. It's been a wild ride for him, from the League's basement to a last-day shootout win to get into the playoffs all the way to the Stanley Cup Final.

"It feels like 10 years," a joking Laviolette told the Philadelphia Daily News.

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