Thursday night marks the ninth game of the season for the Flyers, and for the first time, they will see how they stack up against Metropolitan Division foe. The Flyers begin a quick two-game road trip with a visit to Pittsburgh against the Penguins.

The Penguins are dealing with various health issues, some injury-related and some COVID-related. Most notably, Penguins captain Sidney Crosby will be out for Thursday's game after testing positive for COVID on Wednesday. Crosby had missed the first seven games of the Penguins' season recovering from offseason wrist surgery and just returned for his first game of the season on Saturday. Nonetheless, Pittsburgh is off to a 3-3-2 start without having Crosby or Evgeni Malkin in the lineup, so this is still no easy task for the Flyers.

Game time is at 7 p.m.

Team Leaders

Philadelphia FlyersGPGAPPittsburgh PenguinsGPGAP
Sean Couturier84711Danton Heinen8426
Claude Giroux85510Evan Rodrigues8325
Cam Atkinson8617Drew O'Connor7325
Travis Konecny8347Brock McGinn8235
Joel Farabee8336Jason Zucker8314

Players To Watch 11-4

Joel Farabee has gone quiet offensively in the last five games and is certainly looking to bounce back. Facing Pittsburgh could be just what he needs, as Farabee has scored four goals and has 11 points in 10 games in his young career against the Penguins.
It's been a rough start to the season for Jake Guentzel with just one goal and four point in seven games to start the season. However, he does have solid numbers in his career against the Flyers, with five goals and 19 points in 19 games.
Goalie Matchup 11-4

Carter Hart gets back in goal for Thursday's game. On Tuesday against Arizona, Hart posted a 29-save shutout to improve to 3-2-1 on the season. Hart has been solid of late despite mixed results in games, and looks to continue that on Thursday night in Pittsburgh.

Tristan Jarry is expected to get the start on Thursday night for Pittsburgh. Jarry is also off to a 3-2-1 start, but has taken the loss in his last two starts, allowing seven goals and stopping 62 of 69 shots.

Projected Lineups

Flyers Line Combos 11-2

Flyers Scratches: Ryan Ellis (injury), Patrick Brown (healthy)

Opponent Line Combos 11-4

Coyotes Scratches: Sidney Crosby (COVID protocol), Brian Dumoulin (COVID protocol), Marcus Pettersson (COVID protocol), Chad Ruhwedel (COVID protocol), Evgeni Malkin (injury), Bryan Rust (injury), Taylor Fedun (healthy), Sam Lafferty (healthy)

Lineup Notes

  • Flyers: No changes are expected to the lineup with Ryan Ellis still out for the road trip.
  • Penguins: The Penguins are dealing with multiple absences from the lineup. In addition to injuries to Malkin and Bryan Rust, Crosby and Brian Dumoulin joined the COVID protocol list on Wednesday and will also miss this game.

Game Notes

  • Power Play: Flyers (15th), Penguins (26th)
  • Penalty Kill: Flyers (18th), Penguins (1st)
  • Recent History vs. Penguins
    • May 4, 2021 - Penguins 7, Flyers 3 (at PHI)
    • May 3, 2021 - Flyers 7, Penguins 2 (at PHI)
    • April 15, 2021 - Flyers 2, Penguins 1 (F/SO) (at PIT)
    • March 6, 2021 - Penguins 4, Flyers 3 (at PIT)
    • March 4, 2021 - Flyers 4, Penguins 3 (at PIT)
    • March 2, 2021 - Penguins 5, Flyers 2 (at PIT)
    • Jan. 15, 2021 - Flyers 5, Penguins 2 (at PHI)
    • Jan. 13, 2021 - Flyers 6, Penguins 3 (at PHI)
  • Flyers Leaders vs. Penguins
    • Joel Farabee - 10 GP, 4 G, 7 A, 11 P
    • Claude Giroux - 59 GP, 20 G, 42 A, 62 P
    • Derick Brassard - 27 GP, 7 G, 17 A, 24 P
    • Travis Konecny - 22 GP, 8 G, 10 A, 18 P
    • Carter Hart - 7 GP, 4-2-0, 2.50 GAA, .922 SV%
  • Milestone Watch
    • Rasmus Ristolainen needs one assist to reach 200 for his career.
    • Travis Konecny needs three goals to reach 100 for his career.
    • Claude Giroux needs five power-play points to pass Bobby Clarke for the Flyers all-time franchise lead.

Where to Watch
TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Radio: Flyers Broadcast Network

Kevin Durso is Flyers insider for 97.3 ESPN and Flyers editor for Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.

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