The Philadelphia Flyers will play at home for the first time in three weeks, hoping to regenerate the momentum created when they were last there.
Coming off a long and somewhat disappointing road trip, the Flyers look to remain the NHL's only unbeaten team at home when they face the Atlantic Division rival Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.
This game is the first of four straight at the Wachovia Center for Philadelphia (9-6-0) following its longest road swing of the season, having gone 3-5-0. This is its first home game since Oct. 20.
"Ideally you want to come out of any road trip .500 or better," coach John Stevens told the Flyers' official web site. "I thought we won the games we deserved to win and lost the games we deserved to lose. We just have to come back home and get some rest and get back to work."
The Flyers have won all of their league-low four home games this season. They have not opened a season with five consecutive home victories since winning their first eight of the 1986-87 season. This is the furthest they have gone into a season without losing at home since opening 2003-04 with 12 wins and two ties in their first 14 home games.
Last season, Philadelphia did not post its fifth home win until Feb. 12, and went on to finish an NHL-worst 10-24-7 at home.
The Flyers hope Martin Biron can rebound after he surrendered four goals in a span of 8:20 and was pulled early in the second period of a 4-1 loss to the New Jersey Devils on Thursday. It was the first time Biron played on back-to-back days this season, and the first time he was removed from a game.
"For me, it just seemed like I wasn't going the right way I was touching the puck," Biron said. "It just wasn't there."
Biron stopped 27 shots in a 3-1 win over the Penguins on Wednesday, when the Flyers became the first team all season to deny the Penguins' a power-play goal.
Pittsburgh (7-8-1) has one power-play goal in all eight of its road games. The Flyers have allowed one extra-man goal in 17 chances at home, and have killed off their last 13 short-handed situations overall.
Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin have fueled Pittsburgh's power play.
Half of Crosby's 24 points have come with the man advantage. He has nine goals and 15 assists during a career-high 15-game point streak since being shut out in a season-opening loss at Carolina. Crosby assisted on the Penguins' only goal Wednesday, but has failed to score in four straight games versus the Flyers even though he has 31 points in 17 career games against them.
Malkin has three goals and 11 assists during his career-high nine-game point streak, with a goal and five assists coming on power plays.
"We can't rely on one line," Penguins coach Michael Therrien said. "This is a team effort and we are going to need more contributions from everyone."
The Penguins lost for the fourth time in five games with a 4-2 defeat to the New York Rangers on Thursday. Pittsburgh had a 14-7 shots advantage in the third period after being outshot 32-14 in the first 40 minutes.
"Too little, too late," Crosby said. "We've got to give ourselves a better chance to get back in it."
Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury is looking to avoid suffering four straight losses for the first time since Dec. 16-27. He has won nine straight meetings with the Flyers, the last two in shootouts, to improve to 10-3-0 with a 2.75 goals-against average in 14 appearances against them.
Biron is 6-0-1 with two ties and a 1.84 GAA in his last nine games versus the Penguins after going 1-9-0 with a tie and a 3.67 GAA in his first 11 appearances against them.
It's uncertain if the Flyers will get left wing Simon Gagne back in the lineup after he sat out Thursday due to dizziness stemming from a collision with Pittsburgh's Gary Roberts the previous night.
Gagne, who led Philadelphia with 41 goals in 2006-07 and has eight points this season, also missed four games due to dizziness after being knocked out of a game at Florida on Oct. 24.