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Philadelphia Flyers vs. Carolina Hurricanes

Philadelphia Flyers (37-32-8) at Carolina Hurricanes (42-28-7)


NHL Hockey: Friday, March 29, 2019

(PNC Arena)


Line and Odds: Carolina Hurricanes -200

Over/Under: 6




     How lucky am I? I get to work a Saturday, which means I won’t have to watch this mediocre match-up between the Carolina Hurricanes and the Philadelphia Flyers. The Hurricanes are clinging to dear life for that wild-card spot they currently have while the Flyers playoff hopes are just about dead. Philly does have pride to play for and it would be a boost to team moral if they were able to shake up the chances of the Hurricanes. Plus, there’s a small chance Philly makes the playoffs but it’s so slim, they might as well not have a chance at all.

     There was a time when it looked like the Flyers would streak their way into the postseason but the momentum they carried with them into March has burned off. They’re 5-5 in their last ten and enter this match-up two games over .500 on the road. When it comes to statistical rankings for the Flyers, there’s only average and below average.

     Their goal scoring is ranked 15th in the league while their goals against is ranked at 23rd. Can you name a team that’s made the postseason with those kind of numbers? Neither can I. Their special teams are just about the same with their Power Play ranking 25th in the league while their Penalty Kill ranks 19th. Neither of those rankings are good enough to bring one to the post season but then again, teams with higher rankings in both regards won’t be chasing Lord Stanley either so I digress.

     All the Philly faithful can hope for is that Carolina doesn’t show up to play in this game. They’re coming off a 3-2 loss on home ice to the defending champions while Philly walks into Raleigh with a 5-4 shootout win over the grossly overrated Toronto Maple Leafs. Carolina has the advantage of home ice where they’re nine games over .500 on the season.

     When it comes to the statistical rankings for the Hurricanes, they’re better than the Flyers in some areas, slightly below them in others but the only mediocre ranking Carolina possesses is their Power Play, which currently sits at 22nd. Their penalty kill is banging on the top five door as they sit at sixth in the league. Philly’s power play will have a tough go at it should Carolina take the inevitable penalty.

     Carolina’s goal scoring ranks just below Philly’s ranking as they’re at 16 but their goals against is considerably higher, 14 spots higher than Philly’s in fact. They’re entering this game 6-4in their last ten but they’re hoping to win this game and out to finish off the season. Every team wants to do that of course, so the question is will they?


     Based on the evidence, one can expect this to be more of a defensive struggle. Philadelphia’s far more discipline than the Hurricanes are but as I was saying, their power play might have an awful time of it. There’s also the fact that Carolina is in a more desperate situation than the Flyers and desperate times call for desperate play. This could be a double-edged sword for the Hurricanes. Grip those sticks too tight and Philly might be able to take advantage.

     Either way, I expect a tight game. I don’t suppose we’ll see a ton of goals but we will see a few. Considering that the Hurricanes are in a better situation with better rankings, I’d have to give them the edge. It won’t be by much but a win is a win in professional sports. My pick, Carolina will further cement their playoff spot against the Flyers.

Carolina 3-Philadelphia 2