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Flyers preaching focus, accountability

by Adam Kimelman

VOORHEES, N.J. -- After a day of meetings and a light morning skate Friday, can the Philadelphia Flyers get into the right mindset heading into their game against the New Jersey Devils on Friday night (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US)?

"I hope so," defenseman Kimmo Timonen said. "What else could it be? If it's not in the right place, in the right spot, then we're not doing the right things. Looks like we're focused. We had a lot of meetings [Thursday], so hopefully it's in the right place."

The Flyers enter the game with losses in four of their past five, including a 5-2 defeat Wednesday at the Devils, and they enter the game Friday 11th in the Eastern Conference, five points out of a Stanley Cup Playoff spot with 20 games left in the regular season.

Despite that deficit, forward Simon Gagne told the key is to stay positive while blocking out any doubt.

"We have to find a way to put that [negativity] away and focus on what we have here inside of the locker room, with the coaching staff," Gagne said. "A good thing is everyone believes in each other here. We believe we have the group to do it. Sure, we're not happy the way we're playing right now, it's not acceptable. We had a couple good meetings [Thursday] and guys should come out a lot stronger than we did the last game against New Jersey. … I'm confident the message went through. The good thing is we have a good bunch of guys here. We trust in each other."

Timonen said it's also time for the Flyers' top players to step up their play.

"The best players have to be the best players," he said. "That's why you get paid the big bucks … so whoever makes lots of money, we have to be the best players, including myself."

The Flyers held an optional skate Friday morning at their Skate Zone practice site. One of the players taking part was defenseman Luke Schenn, who sat out the game Wednesday with the flu but looks likely to return to the lineup Friday.

Here is what the Flyers' lineup likely will look like when they take the ice Friday at Wells Fargo Center:

Scott Hartnell - Claude Giroux - Jakub Voracek

Matt Read - Brayden Schenn - Wayne Simmonds

Danny Briere - Sean Couturier - Simon Gagne

Zac Rinaldo - Ruslan Fedotenko - Maxime Talbot

Nicklas Grossmann- Braydon Coburn

Kimmo Timonen - Luke Schenn

Andrej Meszaros - Bruno Gervais

Ilya Bryzgalov

Michael Leighton

Scratched: Mike Knuble, Kurtis Foster

Injured: Jody Shelley (hip)


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