Flyers

Flyers vs. Senators: Live stream, storylines, game time and more

Flyers vs. Senators: Live stream, storylines, game time and more

It's easy to forget there's an actual hockey game taking place tonight at the Wells Fargo Center.

There is, and it's actually a pretty important one for the 10-11-2 Flyers.

The Flyers host the 9-12-3 Senators in what should be a pretty winnable game, right? 

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

• When: 7 p.m. ET with Flyers Pregame Live at 6:30 p.m.
• Where: Wells Fargo Center
• Broadcast: NBCSP
• Live stream: NBCSportsPhiladelphia.com and the NBC Sports MyTeams app

• This has to be a tough game for both the players and coaching staff with everything up in limbo with everyone's jobs basically on the line.

Dave Hakstol remains the head coach … for now. Flyers president Paul Holmgren said Hakstol's fate falls in the hands of the new general manager.

"I think he's done a decent job in the circumstances he's coached under," Holmgren said Tuesday, "particularly this last little while where the goaltending — our top guys are hurt. … I think he's a good coach.

"I hope the new GM gives him every opportunity to evaluate everything, from how he prepares, to how he coaches, how he does his matchups, stuff like that and gives him a fair shot because I think he deserves that."

Another clunker tonight and the players may force Holmgren into doing something he doesn't want to do — make player personnel decisions without a GM in place.

• The Flyers on Tuesday afternoon activated winger Michael Raffl, who's expected to return to the lineup after suffering a knee injury Oct. 22. He will replace Tyrell Goulbourne.

Raffl's return will be a welcomed addition to the fourth line and the penalty kill. He also gives Hakstol a veteran presence he can trust, which will help with the coach's tendency of playing Goulbourne limited minutes.

• And the Flyers' starting goaltender will be … Anthony Stolarz.

Stolarz became the fifth goalie to play for the Flyers this season in Saturday night's 6-0, penalty-free loss in Toronto and will become the fifth goalie to start a game tonight too.

Tonight will be Stolarz's first NHL start since April 9, 2017, when he made 32 saves in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Hurricanes. He was steady in relief Saturday, stopping 33 of 35 shots he faced.

The Flyers most certainly need a huge effort from Stolarz tonight.

• Tonight will feature the league's two worst penalty kills, so prepare to see some power-play goals. It should be an adventure whenever a team is on the power play tonight.

The Flyers' PK ranks 31st in the NHL at 69.7 percent, while the Senators' unit is 30th at 70.1 percent. The worst PK percentage in NHL history is 68.2 percent, accomplished by the 1979-80 Kings.

Special teams will play a huge factor tonight. Unfortunately for the Flyers, Ottawa's power play is actually pretty decent. The Sens sport the league's ninth-best PP, converting 23.8 percent of the time.

• The Senators have lost four straight games and are 2-8-1 on the road this season. They are not a very good hockey team. Neither are the Flyers, but you can actually argue this team is underperforming.

Come out tonight and lose to this Senators team, and there is an even bigger problem than we want to admit. This is a must-win game for the Flyers, and yes, we're 23 games into the season.

Projected lineup

Forwards
Claude Giroux-Sean Couturier-Travis Konecny 
Dale Weise-Nolan Patrick-Jakub Voracek
James van Riemsdyk-Jordan Weal-Wayne Simmonds
Oskar Lindblom-Scott Laughton-Michael Raffl

Defensemen
Ivan Provorov-Robert Hagg
Shayne Gostisbehere-Andrew MacDonald
Travis Sanheim-Radko Gudas

Goalies
Anthony Stolarz
Calvin Pickard

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Toughest player he has faced? Joel Farabee has shown he's ready for his answers

Toughest player he has faced? Joel Farabee has shown he's ready for his answers

Joel Farabee was 5 years old when Sidney Crosby made his NHL debut.

One would understand if Farabee was nervous playing against the two-time Hart Memorial Trophy winner and three-time Stanley Cup champion for the first time as a teenage rookie in the NHL.

But Farabee has more than held his own against some of the league's biggest stars, which says a lot about the Flyers' 2018 first-round pick who just turned 20 years old in February.

“Wow, there are a lot of good players in the NHL," Farabee said Monday on NBC Sports Philadelphia's Flyers Talk podcast when asked who was the toughest player he has faced in 2019-20. "Just playing against Sidney Crosby a few times was really cool, I think he had a few points in both the games that I played in. You could see him in warmups and stuff like that, how focused he is and he’s such a good player, he sees the ice so well.

“Another player I’d say is Nathan MacKinnon, how good he is, how fast of a skater he is. Those are two guys I definitely get excited playing against just because of how good they are. I enjoy being on the ice with them.”

When the Flyers beat the Penguins, 3-0, on Jan. 21, Farabee played on a line with Sean Couturier and Jakub Voracek. That trio faced Crosby's line a bunch and No. 87 went scoreless as the Flyers shut out Pittsburgh.

The Flyers had no fear putting Farabee in such a situation. He also played on the same line Feb. 1, when the Flyers held MacKinnon to no points in a 6-3 win over the Avalanche.

In five combined games against the Penguins and Avalanche, Farabee has put up four points (two goals, two assists) — and his role grew with each matchup.

The path to his NHL dream prepared Farabee for those moments.

“Leaving to go to prep school at 14 I think it was, it was definitely totally different, I had never really lived away from home," Farabee said. "Being able to live away from home, play on a team really helped me out, it forced myself to rely on teammates. I think when I was really young, I was a really shy kid, didn’t really want to talk to people because I was so shy. Being away from home really taught me how to be an adult and how to grow up outside of hockey more or less playing hockey.”

And at 20 years old, Farabee is just getting started for the Flyers.

Subscribe and rate Flyers Talk: Apple Podcasts | Google Play | Spotify | Stitcher | Art19 | YouTube

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

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Flyers Talk podcast: Joel Farabee joins the crew to talk all things Flyers

Flyers Talk podcast: Joel Farabee joins the crew to talk all things Flyers

On the latest Flyers Talk podcast, NBC Sports Philadelphia's Katie Emmer and Jordan Hall are joined by special guest Joel Farabee.

From how Farabee is staying busy during the NHL hiatus to his bond with teammates, let's dive in:

1:30 — The Flyers' regular season would have finished by now

4:20 — Neutral site playoff games at smaller venues?

7:00 — More teams in the playoffs makes a lot of sense

13:35 — Farabee back home in upstate New York

15:00 — Cooking during the quarantine and life in the NHL

16:50 — Michael Raffl's haircut!

17:25 — Farabee "carrying" his teammates on Xbox

18:30 — Playing under a coach like Alain Vigneault

20:20 — Leaving home at 14 to pursue an NHL career

21:25 — Toughest players to compete against and the NHL adjustment

22:45 — Favorite road trip of the season

• 23:20 — Growing up a Philly sports fan

• 24:00 — Staying in shape during the stoppage

• 25:35 — Great to hear Flyers players in good spirits 

• 27:35 — An example of Emmer's Minnesota roots

Subscribe and rate Flyers Talk: Apple Podcasts | Google Play | Spotify | Stitcher | Art19 | YouTube

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

More on the Flyers