Game Preview: Philadelphia Flies in to Face the Blackhawks

No pun intended, they literally flew in to Chicago for the matchup ?

Ottawa Senators v Chicago Blackhawks
Ottawa Senators v Chicago Blackhawks / Patrick McDermott/GettyImages

Since his return, Connor Bedard has put to rest all of the Brock Faber (or other accoladed rookie) Calder Trophy talk. With an impressive 6 points in 3 games since hitting the ice once again it seems that Bedard and the Blackhawks have a renewed confidence in finding the back of the net.

The correlation has been uncanny, Bedard's points almost directly coincide with the Blackhawks scoring output (7 goals in 3 games to Bedard's 6 points). The prior 5 games, all without Connor Bedard, the Blackhawks only managed 6 goals (1.2 goals per game). That is almost double (2.33 to 1.2) the amount of scoring since Connor Bedard rejoined the team.

Connor Bedard, Jake Sanderson
Ottawa Senators v Chicago Blackhawks / Patrick McDermott/GettyImages

Tonight the Philadelphia Flyers, who have defied expectations, come in to try and stop this recent uptick in scoring by the league's 32nd ranked team. Coming into the season, it was a perceived formality that the Flyers could be drafting in the top 5 to 10 of the upcoming draft once again. Stout coaching, a renewed energy on the ice, and a healthy Sean Couturier have found traction thus far to the tune of the 13th ranked team in the NHL (29-20-7, 65 points in 56 games). That 95 point pace is well ahead of the team's 75 points the seaosn prior.

Sean Couturier
Seattle Kraken v Philadelphia Flyers / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

As the Flyers come in though, their play of late has been just average. Just 9 points in their last 10 matchups, the Flyers will look to rebound (a loss in their last game as well) against a Blackhawks team looking to improve with the return of Connor Bedard (1-2-0 since his return). The matchup at the UC could also see a scoring outburst as Philadelphia's two goalies each have sub .900 save percentages and the Blackhawks have much maligned netminder Arvid Soderblom in the crease this evening.

Will the Blackhawks even up their record since #98 hit the ice once again or will the Flyers come into enemy territory and show the home fans a bad show? Puck drop is at 6:30 EST with the game on TNT / MAX. Go Hawks Go!