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Flyers-Penguins Preview

AP - Sports

You won't find any surprises when comparing the Pittsburgh Penguins' game-by-game scoring totals with their results.

The Penguins are 11-2-0 when they put up three or more goals and 0-4-0 when they fall short of that. After scoring only twice in two games, they'll try to avoid their second three-game skid of the season Wednesday night at home against the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Penguins didn't manage an even-strength goal in road losses to the New York Rangers and St. Louis. They had a season-low 20 shots in Saturday's 2-1 loss to the Blues.

"(The Blues) are probably the best in the league playing this defensive-minded, checking game," forward Jussi Jokinen said. "We still generated enough chances to score three or four goals, but we didn't bury those chances."

Jokinen scored a power-play goal in the second with assists from Evgeni Malkin and James Neal, who returned from a 15-game absence due to an upper-body injury.

"This was a hard-fought game and a battle throughout," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma told the team's official website. "It felt like a playoff type of game in terms of room on the ice and it was even refereed like a playoff game. It was tough going out there."

Pittsburgh is 5-5 in its last 10, a stretch in which Sidney Crosby has scored twice, while Malkin and Pascal Dupuis, a 20-goal scorer last season, haven't found the net.

Slumps like these, however, don't last long when Crosby and Malkin face the Flyers.

Crosby has 38 goals and 96 points in 61 career meetings, his highest totals against any team. He has more assists only against the New York Islanders (61). Crosby has scored in his last two against the Flyers and has at least a point in four straight.

Malkin's 32 goals and 47 assists in 57 games against the in-state rivals are more than he's recorded against any other team.

They both scored in a 4-1 win at Philadelphia on Oct. 17. The Penguins have won three straight in the series and six of the last eight.

Defenseman Paul Martin didn't play against St. Louis and could miss a second straight game with a lower-body injury.

The Flyers (6-10-1) have won two in a row for the second time this season after Tuesday's 5-0 victory at Ottawa. Their nine goals in the back-to-back wins is their highest total in a two-game span this season.

"The first month we tried to do things when we didn't have them and now we're just keeping things simple by getting pucks deep and getting pucks out when we have to and winning puck battles along the boards," Flyers forward Matt Read said. "Those little things turn into victories."

Jakub Voracek, the team's goals leader in 2012-13, scored twice after netting just one in the previous 16 games. He has five goals in his last four against the Penguins.

Center Claude Giroux added two assists against the Senators. He has 20 points during a 10-game points streak against the Penguins.

Voracek and Brayden Schenn scored as the Flyers went 2 for 3 with the man advantage. Philadelphia came in tied for the league low with six power-play goals in 64 chances.

Steve Mason earned his first shutout of the season with 24 saves.

"This was an extremely sound effort all around and from a defensive standpoint we didn't give a lot up," Mason said.

Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury is 3-0-0 with a 2.07 goals-against average in his last four starts against the Flyers.

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