The Flyers are ready to audition some new faces with 20 games to go in their playoff push.
With the trade deadline in the rearview mirror, the Flyers (35-20-7) host the Sharks (26-32-4) Tuesday.
Let's get into the essentials:
• When: 7 p.m. ET with Flyers Pregame Live at 6:30 p.m. ET
• Where: Wells Fargo Center
• Broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia
• Live stream: NBCSportsPhiladelphia.com and the NBC Sports MyTeams app
• Nate Thompson has gotten used to this. He has been traded in February 2018, 2019 and 2020.
The 35-year-old center still appreciated the phone calls from his new teammates. Thompson, who the Flyers acquired Monday in a trade with the Canadiens, said he heard from Claude Giroux, Sean Couturier and Kevin Hayes last night.
"That was really nice," Thompson said Tuesday after morning skate at the Wells Fargo Center. "Whenever guys reach out to you and make you feel welcomed, it’s always nice to hear."
Thompson and fellow trade acquisition Derek Grant will make their Flyers debuts tonight.
Grant, a 29-year-old center with positional versatility and defensive qualities, already has a career-high 14 goals. Coming from the Ducks, Grant can cap his best NHL season yet by helping the Flyers make the playoffs.
“It’s always fun," he said. "I didn’t know anyone really here. I met [Thompson] at the hotel this morning, so we came over together. Everyone has been great, it’s always a little easier when you can get into a game right away and get to know guys a little quicker that way.”
Right now, the Flyers will slide Thompson into their fourth-line center role and he'll help on the penalty kill. Grant will play third-line center between James van Riemsdyk and Tyler Pitlick, while also contributing to the PK.
Assistant coach Ian Laperriere and the Flyers got both players acclimated with film work before morning skate.
“All done, they got in here this morning, they sat with Lappy," Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault said. "We’ve got a system video that we show all new players, whether they’re guys from Lehigh Valley or in this case guys from other teams, about our priorities and how we do certain things. It went extremely well, we had a team video session, they were very comfortable there.
"I expect them to be excited, motivated and expect them to help us get their first win with us.”
• The Flyers sit in third place of the Metropolitan Division, a point ahead of the Islanders and Blue Jackets, and three points up on the Hurricanes.
Tuesday marks a big night for the race as New York, Columbus and Carolina are all in action. With a victory, the Flyers can draw within one point of the second-place Penguins.
The Flyers hold an 82.3 percent chance to make the playoffs, according to Hockey-Reference.com.
• The Sharks have lost four straight games and own a minus-31 goal differential on the road.
Since Jan. 8, the Flyers are 13-5-1 with an NHL-high 68 goals.
Claude Giroux-Sean Couturier-Jakub Voracek
Scott Laughton-Kevin Hayes-Travis Konecny
James van Riemsdyk-Derek Grant-Tyler Pitlick
Michael Raffl-Nate Thompson-Nicolas Aube-Kubel
Ivan Provorov-Matt Niskanen
Travis Sanheim-Philippe Myers
Robert Hagg-Justin Braun
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