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Game Predictions 3/12/2008

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Toronto vs. Philadelphia – I’m still mad about last night’s game, Marty Biron’s performance excepted.  To win tonight, the Flyers need to show passion.  They are at their best when aggressive on the forecheck, driving to the net, and allowing strong defensive play to generate offensive opportunities.  Additionally, they need another great performance in goal.  They have shown an ability to step on the opponent and squeeze – think the 8-2 Pittsburgh game – so now it’s time to pull out all the stops.  The playoffs depend on it.  – FLYERS

Calgary vs. Washington – I would love to see Washington win this one on a game-winner from Nicklas Backstrom.  He’s a supremely gifted player who deserves to redeem himself for putting the puck in his own net against Pittsburgh.  This team has so much potential – we see it every time they have a game like the 10-2 victory over Boston.  I think what we saw this weekend was that they are young and haven’t yet developed the ability to completely finish a more mature team.  The benefit of youth is their capacity to bounce back.  – CAPITALS

Buffalo vs. Pittsburgh – Welcome to injury central.  Buffalo will be without defensemen Jaroslav Spacek and Dmitri Kalinin (likely for the rest of the season on both counts) and without forward Andrew Peters (suspended for an altercation with Colton Orr on Monday night).  Good news for Buffalo – Tallinder should return tonight from a shoulder injury incurred against Philadelphia last week.  Pittsburgh is without Marian Hossa (sprained knee), Petr Sykora (back), Maxim Talbot (high ankle sprain), and Sidney Crosby (high ankle sprain).  Sykora was a key piece of the Malkin line that held the fort in Crosby’s absence.  Buffalo, on the other hand, has been injured all year long.  – SABRES

NY Islanders vs. Florida – The Panthers, especially Olli Jokinen, haven’t been quite the same since Richard Zednik’s injury in Buffalo.  But they can still spoil the Islanders’ narrow hopes for the playoffs.  – ISLANDERS

Carolina vs. Chicago – HURRICANES

Vancouver vs. Anaheim – The defensive battle of the evening.  – DUCKS

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