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Flyers must silence Pens in Game 3

by Adam Schwartz

The 2008 Eastern Conference Finals resumes in Philadelphia tonight, where Evgeni Malkin and the Penguins hope to keep their momentum going on the road against Daniel Briere and the Flyers. Pittsburgh is 10-1 in the playoffs so far.
The Eastern Conference Finals continue Tuesday night when the Philadelphia Flyers host the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 3.

The Flyers will look to cut the Penguins' 2-0 lead in half when the series shifts to the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia.

Here's what to keep an eye out for:

* The Penguins, who have lost just one of their 11 playoff games this season, have allowed just four first-period goals, which is tied for the second fewest among playoff teams. Pittsburgh, which has allowed just eight goals in four road games, has a 21 percent power-play success rate.

* Penguins center Evgeni Malkin, who is tied for second in the League with 17 playoff points, has eight goals and 10 assists for 18 points in 10 combined regular season and playoff games. Malkin, who is one of three candidates for the Hart Trophy as the NHL's most valuable player, is one of just five players with three game-winning goals in the playoffs.

* Pittsburgh right wing Pascal Dupuis, who plays alongside Sidney Crosby and Marian Hossa, has tied a career-high with four playoff assists. Dupuis, who had 10 goals and five assists for 15 points in 62 games with the Atlanta Thrashers this season, has three goals and 14 assists for 17 points in 27 combined regular-season and playoff games for the Penguins.

* Penguins defenseman Hal Gill, who had an even plus-minus rating in 63 games with the Toronto Maple Leafs this season, has a plus-6 rating in 29 games combined regular-season and playoff games with the Penguins. Gill, who is paired with Rob Scuderi, averages the second-most shorthanded ice time among Penguins with 3:33 per game.

* Pittsburgh goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, who lists poutine as one of his favorite foods, has allowed more than three goals just once in his past six games. Fleury, whose .937 save percentage is among the goalies remaining in the playoffs, has faced more than 35 shots in just one game during the playoffs.

* The Penguins, who have four players with at least 10 points, have just three players that have won the Stanley Cup – Petr Sykora, Darryl Sydor and Gary Roberts. Sydor, who is the only member of the team to have won the Cup multiple times, has not played since March 31.

* The Flyers, who have a 23.1 power-play success rate, have had the fewest power plays among the four teams remaining with 26. Philadelphia, which has allowed the highest average of shots against with an average of 32.4 per game, allowed the most shots among playoff teams with 2,609.

* Philadelphia right wing Joffrey Lupul, who is playing in the Conference Finals for his second consecutive playoff season, has a plus-11 in 30 career playoff games played. Lupul, who had no points in his first five games of the playoffs, has a point in eight of his last nine games.    

* Flyers center Danny Briere, who had one goal and six assists for seven points in seven regular-season games against the Penguins, has no points and a minus-3 rating in the first two games of this series. Briere, who faced Patrick Roy in his first NHL game, is tied for the team lead in playoff points with 14.

* Philadelphia center Mike Richards, who had one goal and seven assists for eight points in eight regular-season games against the Penguins this season, has three goals in the first two games of this series. Richards, who is a fan favorite in Philadelphia, has a plus-16 rating in 87 combined regular season and playoff games this season.

* Flyers left wing Scott Hartnell, who had 24 goals and 19 assists for 43 points during the regular season, has just three goals and one assist for four points in 14 playoff games. Hartnell, selected No. 6 in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft, has never been past the first round of the playoffs until this season.

* Philadelphia goalie Martin Biron, who has given up at least three goals in his last three games, has made the most saves in the playoffs with 412 – 37 more than any other goalie. Biron, who owns two horses, has never been a starting goalie for a playoff team prior to this season.

* Flyers defenseman Randy Jones, who averages 20:53 of ice time per game, played 26:14 last game due to injuries to top Philadelphia defensemen Kimmo Timonen and Braydon Coburn.

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