Flyers

Flyers at Blue Jackets: Live stream, storylines, game time and more

Flyers at Blue Jackets: Live stream, storylines, game time and more

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Flyers (30-26-7, 67 points) will go bobbing for a victory Thursday against the Columbus Blue Jackets (35-24-3, 73 points) when they square off against Sergei Bobrovsky, who's looking to beat his old team for the fourth time this season.

Bobrovsky has 202 career wins since joining the Blue Jackets in the summer of 2012 — the same total of the top four Flyers goalies during that time. Steve Mason leads the way with 104, followed by Michal Neuvirth with 39 and Brian Elliott with 31.

Let's take a look at tonight's essentials:

• When: 7 p.m. ET with Flyers Pregame Live at 6:30 p.m. 
• Where: Nationwide Arena
• Broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia
• Live stream: NBCSportsPhiladelphia.com and the NBC Sports MyTeams app

• The Blue Jackets have been a stinger in the Flyers' side since the two teams became Metropolitan Division foes. Columbus holds an 18-5-1 record against the Flyers dating back to 2013-14.

Columbus is going for a four-game regular-season sweep against the Flyers. It would be its first-ever sweep of the Flyers in a series of two or more games. 

• Goaltender Brian Elliott has been very solid in four appearances since returning from a core muscle injury. Elliott is 2-0-0 with a 2.21 goals-against average and .940 save percentage (see story). He will start his third straight game Thursday.

• Defenseman Samuel Morin has been activated and is currently on the Flyers' roster, although there’s no timetable for when the 2013 first-round pick will see his first action of the season.

• The Blue Jackets made the biggest splash ahead of the trade deadline, going all-in by acquiring center Matt Duchene, forward Ryan Dzingel, defenseman Adam McQuaid and goaltender Keith Kinkaid.

With the additions of Duchene and Dzingel, Columbus is the only NHL team with six 20-goal scorers (Cam Atkinson, Artemi Panarin, Pierre-Luc Dubois, Josh Anderson).

They were already a good team and now they’ve added three or four players. Sometimes when you play a couple days after the deadline, I don’t know if it’s the right word ... ‘screw' up the chemistry the first few games, so maybe we can take advantage of that. Pittsburgh with all their injuries found a way to win it in Columbus, which I think was huge for them as well, so that means we’ve got to have the same approach.

- Jakub Voracek

• Bellmawr, New Jersey's Eric Robinson has been a mainstay in the Blue Jackets' lineup recently. Robinson played youth hockey at Hollydell Ice Arena, where his mother worked with Guy Gaudreau, the father of Johnny Gaudreau. Robinson went undrafted before playing four years at Princeton.

Atkinson, the Blue Jackets' leading scorer with 35 goals, has a special teams goal in each of his past three games (two power play, one shorthanded).

 The Blue Jackets' penalty kill has been outstanding recently. Since Dec. 31, the Jackets have allowed a power-play goal in just three of their last 24 games, a success rate of 93 percent.

Projected lineup

Forwards
Claude Giroux-Nolan Patrick-Travis Konecny
Oskar Lindblom-Sean Couturier-Jakub Voracek
James van Riemsdyk-Scott Laughton-Ryan Hartman
Michael Raffl-Corban Knight-Phil Varone

Defensemen
Ivan Provorov-Travis Sanheim
Robert Hagg-Radko Gudas
Shayne Gostisbehere-Philippe Myers

Goalies
Brian Elliott
Cam Talbot

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2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule: Capitals, Hurricanes set for Game 7 clash

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2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule: Capitals, Hurricanes set for Game 7 clash

There were two Game 7 matchups Tuesday night.

On Wednesday night, we've got another one and it should be good as the defending champion Capitals try to put away the Rod Brind'Amour-led Hurricanes, who are in the playoffs for the first time since 2009.

The first-round series hasn't lacked fireworks or physicality. Game 7 should be no different.

Below is the full schedule for Day 15 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs. You can watch the entire playoffs on the networks of NBC. 

Carolina Hurricanes at Washington Capitals (tied 3-3)
Game 7, Eastern Conference first round
7:30 p.m. ET | TV: NBCSN | Live stream here

Don't lose perspective with Flyers prospect Jay O'Brien

Don't lose perspective with Flyers prospect Jay O'Brien

Updated: 5:13 p.m.

The Flyers saw both ends of the spectrum with their first-round picks from the 2018 draft.

While Joel Farabee shined at Boston University this season (see story), Jay O'Brien struggled to find his game at Providence College.

After a freshman season comprised of injuries and five points (two goals, three assists) in 25 games, it appears O'Brien's time with the Friars is over.

According to a report Tuesday by Jeff Cox of the New England Hockey Journal, O'Brien has entered the NCAA transfer portal and is expected to play for the Penticton Vees of the BCHL during the 2019-20 season. However, per separate reports, O'Brien's decision for next season is still being decided.

O'Brien, a playmaking center, will have three years of college eligibility remaining.

Now, before anyone starts debating O'Brien's future, let's remember the importance of perspective with teenage prospects. 

O'Brien was perceived as a bit of project when the Flyers' previous regime of Ron Hextall and Chris Pryor selected him 19th overall last summer. Taking O'Brien at No. 19 was viewed by many as a reach, but the Flyers' scouting staff was high on the Thayer Academy product and trusted its evaluation. The Flyers took O'Brien over other centers Joseph Veleno, Rasmus Kupari and Isac Lundestrom.

This season, Veleno put up 104 points in the QMJHL, Kupari had 33 points over 43 games in Liiga (Finnish pro league) and Lundestrom appeared in 15 games with the Ducks.

O'Brien, because of his smaller stature (5-foot-11, 174 pounds) and being drafted out of prep school, had an adjustment period playing Division I hockey (see story). Multiple injuries also didn't help his cause with the transition.

But patience with O'Brien was always going to be imperative. The Flyers drafted him on a lot of upside after taking more of a guarantee in the quick-rising Farabee five picks earlier. The 19-year-old O'Brien isn't lacking in ability or work ethic. Providence head coach Nate Leaman, who led the Friars to a national title in 2015, called O'Brien's skill set "elite."

"It takes time to learn to play at the speed, to play with the lack of space," Leaman said in January during a phone interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia (see story).

"These guys that come right from high school, it takes time and I know Philly has told us that they understand that also."

O'Brien paid little attention to pre-draft rankings last summer.

"I don't even know where I was," he said at development camp. "It doesn't mean much to me. It's not really where you get drafted, it's what you do after you get drafted."

He'll have a new path in 2019-20, another chance to prove himself. There's still plenty to like, with plenty of time.

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