PHILADELPHIA FLYERS at TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS
When: 7:30 p.m.
Where: Air Canada Centre
How: TV-Rogers Sportsnet, Radio-The Fan 590
THE READING MATERIAL
Lance Hornby: Maple Leafs playing the percentages
Lance Hornby: Maple Leafs goalie Andersen climbs ‘W’ chart
Philadelphia — 31-26-8 (70 points; fourth place in the Metropolitan Division)
Toronto — 29-22-14 (72 points; fourth place in Atlantic Division)
THE BIG MATCH-UP
Wayne Simmonds vs. the Leafs defence
It’s nine points in 10 games at the ACC for Scarborough’s Simmonds and, unlike the Wings on Tuesday, he will pose a greater obstacle in front of the net. On Tuesday against Buffalo, he had seven shot attempts but came up empty. Simmonds had a goal against the Maple Leafs on Jan, 26.
KEYS TO THE GAME
Beat the clock
Toronto was in good position to take a point out of Philly on the end of a back-to-back on Jan, 26, gave up a late goal and missed a great chance to tie it again. The Leafs have left too many points on the table already.
With six even-strength goals on Tuesday against the Buffalo Sabres and points in five straight games, the Flyers appear to be putting the same late-season push together as last season. Mike Babcock, meanwhile, has been insistent his Leafs can’t score their way through the defensive mistakes they have made.
Power back on
Toronto’s league-leading power play has done well only in spurts of late, but had a huge goal Tuesday from James van Riemsdyk. It hasn’t escaped his former team’s notice that JVR just completed another 20-goal season. The Flyers are good with an extra man, too.
That goal was JVR’s first in 14 games, while Flyer Claude Giroux ended a 13-game spell of his own on Tuesday. The win was just Philly’s fourth in its past 18 road tests.
One of seven teams with more than 1,000 shot blocks this season, the Flyers have made life easier on their goalies. The Leaf duo of Frederik Andersen and Curtis McElhinney have earned their entire their pay cheques some nights when the defence rests.