TAMPA, FLA. — No one on the roster has been shy about saying it: December is certainly not the most wonderful time of year for the Flyers.

With 11 of 15 games on the road in the last calendar month, and six of those being against Western Conference teams, the Flyers have a tall order.

“I think so, but obviously it is a good measuring stick,” right wing Wayne Simmonds said. “We’re up for the challenge in here. We’ve got a lot of games against a lot of good teams in a lot of nights. We’re really gonna test ourselves here and I think we’re ready for it.”

As a whole, the Eastern Conference hasn’t been. Western Conference teams have a combined 96-40-17 record against teams from the Eastern Conference.

Somewhere in there, the Flyers are probably going to need a few extra pieces. Winger Michael Raffl has been a healthy scratch for the last seven games while defensemen Hal Gill and Andrej Meszaros have sat for the last eight.

Heck, maybe one or more sees action tonight against a dangerous Tampa Bay Lightning. The Bolts have surprised quite a few people without Vinny Lecavalier, who had his contract with the Lightning bought out and subsequently signed with the Flyers.

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