Danny Briere and Nicklas Grossmann both return from injuries suffered in the April 1st 6-4 victory over the Penguins. Grossmann helps solidify the physical defense while Briere brings his playoff offensive prowess to the Flyers line up. In 57 career playoff games with the Flyers, Briere has 29 goals and 30 assists for 59 points. Pavel Kubina has been scratched from tonight’s opener in favor of rookie Marc-Andre Bourdon. Andreas Lilja will also play tonight on the Flyers’ blue line. The Flyers will be relying heavily on their rookies as they look to make a deep playoff run.
The Penguins also get a boost as they get some of their key contributors back from injury. Forty goal scorer James Neal is expected to return after missing two games at the end of the year. In addition to Neal, Sidney Crosby’s line mate Steve Sullivan is slated to return tonight. On the blue line defensemen Matt Niskanen and Ben Lovejoy will return to the lineup for the Penguins.
On the season, Flyers forward Jaromir Jagr lead both teams in head to head goals with four.
The puck drop is slated for 7:30 pm at the CONSOL Energy Center. The game can be seen on Comcast Sportsnet and NBC Sports Network. It can also be heard on the radio on 94.1 WIP.
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