Flyers without Giroux as Devils go for series clincher
DEVILS at FLYERS
(New Jersey leads best-of-seven series, 3-1)
TV: NBCSN, CBC, RDS
Big Story: Can the Flyers survive the loss of leading scorer Claude Giroux and keep their season alive? Or will the Devils' relentless attack stomp out Philadelphia's offense for a fourth straight game?
Devils: Coach Peter DeBoer wants his team to have a killer instinct and finish the Flyers with their first opportunity.
"We want to end this as soon as we can," DeBoer said. "We know they're going to play their best game. I'm confident we're going to bring our best game. They're a dangerous team at any point in the series, and this one is always the toughest to win. I like how we're playing so we have to continue to do what we've been doing."
Part of that process will be continuing to frustrate the Flyers, something they've done a tremendous job of the last three games.
"I think coming into this series we saw what they did to Pittsburgh and wanted to make sure that didn't happen to us," DeBoer said. "We knew that composure and discipline were going to be at a premium for us. When we got our heads wrapped around the fact that we're going to have to walk away from those types of situations and take a punch in the head at different points and not retaliate, I think everything else fell in place."
Flyers: Coach Peter Laviolette believes what his team has shown in the past gives him hope for the future.
"I have a tremendous amount of confidence we can win a game [Tuesday]," Laviolette said. "I don't say that as a sales pitch. This team has had success all year long. Regular season had success, first round had success, Game 1 [against the Devils] had success. … We need to do things better and we need to do them quicker and faster. I think if we do that, then we'll find the results that we're looking for."
Danny Briere agreed, saying his team has survived adversity all season and doesn't see that changing now.
"We've faced adversity all year and we've shown we can come back from it," he said. "Obviously this is the biggest challenge of the year. But we've shown all year we're not quitters. And that's what makes me believe that the guys are not going to just quit at this point."
Who's Hot: Devils forward Dainius Zubrus had a pair of goals in Game 4. It was his first multi-goal playoff game since April 15, 2003, when he played for the Washington Capitals. … Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov, who had a 3.89 goals-against average and .871 save percentage in the first round, has been markedly better in the second round, posting a 3.00 GAA and .902 save percentage.
Injury Report: Devils forward Ryan Carter sat out Game 4 with a stomach illness, but skated Monday and could return to the lineup for Game 5. … Flyers defenseman Andrej Meszaros (back) is day-to-day.
Stat Pack: The Flyers are just 1-14 all-time in series when trailing 3-1. Their only win was the 2010 Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Boston Bruins, when they rallied from a 3-0 series deficit to win.
Puck Drop: The big question facing the Flyers now will be how the lineup is remade in the absence of Giroux, the leading scorer in the playoffs.
Zac Rinaldo could return to the lineup for the first time since Game 4 of the first round. He'll likely play on the fourth line, with Maxime Talbot or Eric Wellwood moving to center. Rookie Sean Couturier, who has been used primarily in a defensive role, could move up to a higher line and take on a more offensive mindset.
Couturier had 14 goals in 77 regular-season games and was a 90-point scorer in his last two seasons of junior hockey, so he knows how to put the puck in the net.