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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, April 12th (All times Eastern)

Philadelphia Flyers (41-30-9) at Pittsburgh Penguins (51-24-5), 3 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Philadelphia Flyers will continue their fight for a higher seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, as they visit the rival Pittsburgh Penguins for Saturday's afternoon battle at Consol Energy Center.

The Flyers are tied at 91 points with Columbus for third place in the Metropolitan Division, but have a game in hand as well as one more non- shootout victory over the Blue Jackets, who lost in regulation to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday night.

That setback means that Philadelphia can clinch third place in the Metropolitan with a victory this afternoon.

The team finishing third in the division will face the New York Rangers in the first round of the playoffs. The Rangers locked up second place and home-ice advantage in the first round after Thursday's win against Buffalo.

Philadelphia clinched a postseason berth after posting a second straight win Tuesday night at Florida, but the Flyers lost for the fifth time in seven games following Thursday's 4-2 setback in Tampa.

Steven Stamkos and Tyler Johnson each had a goal and an assist to help the Lightning down the Flyers. Wayne Simmonds and Sean Couturier scored for Philadelphia, while Ray Emery gave up four goals on 30 shots to take the loss.

"To be honest with you, I thought we were taking the play to them in the third period," said Philadelphia head coach Craig Berube.

Nicklas Grossmann missed Thursday's game with an injured right ankle is the Flyers defenseman is questionable for today's game.

The Flyers are wrapping a three-game swing as well as their regular-season road schedule today. Philadelphia, which closes the regular season tomorrow against visiting Carolina, is 17-16-7 as the away team this season.

Philadelphia has won three straight against the Penguins since dropping the opener of the season series at home on Oct. 17. The Flyers have won two straight, three of four and eight of the last 10 regular-season meetings in the Steel City.

The Flyers and Penguins could wind up playing each other in the first round if Philadelphia finishes in the East's first wild card spot. Pittsburgh clinched the Metro Division title and is locked into the East's second spot.

Pittsburgh has won two straight and three of its last four games. The Pens notched a 4-3 shootout victory over Detroit on Wednesday, as Jussi Jokinen scored the lone goal of the decisive phase.

Jokinen, Pittsburgh's third skater, entered the zone close to the right boards and weaved his way towards the slot. He lost control of the puck just as Detroit netminder Jonas Gustavsson went for a poke check. The puck bounced up into the air and rolled into the net for the game winner.

James Neal scored two power-play goals and Jokinen also scored in regulation for the Penguins. Matt Niskanen and Paul Martin both supplied two assists and Marc-Andre Fleury turned aside 34 shots in the win.

The Penguins got a boost from several players returning to the lineup. Kris Letang returned after missing 10 weeks due to a stroke he suffered on Jan. 29. The 2013 Norris Trophy finalist contributed an assist and logged 22:30 in his first game back. Sidney Crosby, Chris Kunitz, and Olli Maatta were also re- inserted into the lineup.

"I felt pretty good," Letang said. "I'm just happy to be on the ice."

Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin is still sidelined with a sprained foot, but he could be ready to go when the playoffs begin next week. Malkin has missed the last nine games.

The Pens are closing the regular season on a three-game road trip that is set to end tomorrow against Ottawa. Pittsburgh boasts a 28-9-2 record as the host this season.

Steve Mason could get the call in net for the Flyers on Saturday and is 4-2-1 with a 2.65 goals against average and .915 save percentage in seven career outings against the Pens.

Fleury is 24-15-1 with a 2.83 GAA and .902 save percentage against Philadelphia in his career. Pens backup Jeff Zatkoff's only career outing against the Flyers came in a March 16 home loss in which he stopped 19-of-20 shots.

04/12 10:27:06 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUKE 47
TULA 13
Final
ECU 70
UNC 41
Final
TOWSN 31
NCCU 20
 
Final
NCSU 42
PRES 0
 
1:30pm Today
CAR
CLB
 
8:30pm Tonight
CAR
PIT
Final
KAN 2
DET 3
Final
CHC 8
LOS 7
Final
OAK 0
PHI 3
Final
NYY 3
TOR 6
Final
COL 5
ARI 1
Final
BAL 7
BOS 2
Final
PIT 0
MIL 1
Final
TAM 3
CWS 1
Final
MIN 3
CLE 7
Final
ATL 2
NYM 4
Final
HOU 10
SEA 1
Final
MIA 2
WAS 3
Final
STL 8
CIN 4
Final
SDP 3
SFG 2
Final
ANA 8
TEX 5
1:05pm Today
NYY
TOR
 
1:10pm Today
MIA
WAS
 
1:35pm Today
BAL
BOS
 
1:35pm Today
PIT
MIL
 
1:35pm Today
ATL
NYM
 
1:40pm Today
TAM
CWS
 
2:10pm Today
MIN
CLE
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
DET
 
2:10pm Today
HOU
SEA
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
LOS
 
3:35pm Today
ANA
TEX
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
PHI
 
4:10pm Today
COL
ARI
 
4:10pm Today
SDP
SFG
 
8:05pm Tonight
STL
CIN
 
Final
WISC 68
BGU 17
Final
MSU 73
EMICH 14
Final
VT 24
GT 27
Final
PITT 20
IOWA 24
Final
RICE 42
ODU 45
Final
UGA 66
TROY 0
Final
SYR 20
MD 34
Final
DUKE 47
TULA 13
Final
COL 21
HAW 12
Final
AKR 17
MARS 48
Final
WAKE 24
ARMY 21
Final
KU 24
CMICH 10
Final
ALA 42
UF 21
Final
FIU 3
LOU 34
Final
ECU 70
UNC 41
Final
NAVY 24
RUTG 31
Final
SMU 6
TEXAM 58
Final
MICH 10
UTAH 26
Final
BYU 41
UVA 33
Final
WYO 20
FATL 19
Final
MIZZ 27
IND 31
Final
PSU 48
UMASS 7
Final
MINN 24
SJST 7
Final
ILL 42
TXST 35
Final
WASH 45
GASTATE 14
Final
SMISS 21
APPST 20
Final
TOL 34
BST 23
Final
OHIO 36
IDAHO 24
Final
CIN 31
UMO 24
Final
MEM 36
MTST 17
Final
LSU 29
MSST 34
Final
ARK 52
NILL 14
Final
ARKST 21
UTST 14
Final
SALABAMA 6
GASO 28
Final
WVU 33
OKLA 45
Final
VANDY 34
SCAR 48
Final
NEB 41
MIAMI 31
Final
NMST 35
NMU 38
Final
HOU 47
UNLV 14
Final
FSU 23
CLEM 17
Final
ARZ 49
CAL 45
Final
ORST 28
SDST 7
Final
WASU 31
OREG 38
Final
BSU 34
LALAF 9
1:30pm Today
CAR
CLB
 
5:00pm Tonight
WAS
BUF
 
6:30pm Tonight
CLB
STL
 
8:00pm Tonight
EDM
CAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
CAL
EDM
 
1:00pm Today
CLE
BAL
1:00pm Today
STL
DAL
1:00pm Today
DET
GBP
1:00pm Today
NYG
HOU
1:00pm Today
JAC
IND
1:00pm Today
NOS
MIN
1:00pm Today
NEP
OAK
1:00pm Today
BUF
SDC
1:00pm Today
CIN
TEN
1:00pm Today
PHI
WAS
4:05pm Today
ARI
SFX
4:25pm Today
SEA
DEN
4:25pm Today
MIA
KAN
8:30pm Tonight
CAR
PIT
Final
TOWSN 31
NCCU 20
 
Final
NCSU 42
PRES 0