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Flyers make multiple lineup changes up front and on back end originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
When the Flyers (14-9-3) play the Rangers (11-12-4) on Wednesday night, they'll aim for their first consecutive wins since the end of February.
Let's get into the essentials for the game:
When: 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: Madison Square Garden
Broadcast: NBC Sports Network
Live stream: NBCSportsPhiladelphia.com and the NBC Sports MyTeams app
Aube-Kubel and Lindblom did not see much of the ice in Monday's 5-4 OT win over the Rangers. Aube-Kubel played only 5:16 minutes and Lindblom only 7:53. Aube-Kubel played 25 seconds in the third period, while Lindblom did not have a shift in the final stanza.
Lindblom is working his way back to form after being diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma in December 2019 and missing the remainder of the 2019-20 regular season. He completed his radiation treatments in July and returned to the Flyers' lineup in the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs for Games 6 and 7 of the second round.
"I had a good conversation with Oskar this morning and I believe that he needs a reset," Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault said Wednesday before the game. "I love the young man, but right now, his game and his energy level, what it seems to be, is not where it needs to be. So we're going to do a small, little reset here with him."
Vigneault didn't rule out the possibility of Lindblom or Aube-Kubel reentering the lineup Thursday.
Aube-Kubel has shown some inconsistency in his game after winning a full-time job last season, starting with his call-up in December 2019.
"It's inconsistency and it's something that we're bringing up with Ku," Vigneault said. "Consistency with the puck, consistency sometimes with some reads. But also finding his way — way too often — in the penalty box on plays that he shouldn't.
"We see a big, strong-skating, right-hand, powerful winger there that's got to find a way to put it together. That's what we're trying to do and that's what he's trying to do; he's got real good intentions, but for tonight, we feel this is the way to go."
Both Aube-Kubel and Lindblom are 24 years old.
"For Ku, he's got ups and downs," Flyers assistant coach Ian Laperriere said Tuesday as the team had the taxi squad players and extras skate. "He's playing great games and other games he seems to lose his focus. That's something that we work on, I work with him pretty much every day, try to keep him focused. It's part of being a young guy, too. Ku's a young NHL player, he's got ups and downs like every young guy out there, he's learning from it every day.
"For Oskar, you talk to Oskar, he knows that he wants to do more, he wants to do more to help the team. Personally, I'll give him a longer break for what he's been through last year. Knowing what he's been through, he couldn't train, he lost muscle mass and even the training he did during the break, it's not enough [time] for what we went through.
"The good thing with both of those guys — they know. They're not in denial, they know that they need to be better, they know they want to be better and that's half of the battle for me. When guys are pushing back and think they're playing well and they're not playing well, it's a big problem. But those two guys know exactly where they stand. They put the work in every day and they'll do that today to get themselves better and back on track."
• On the back end, Shayne Gostisbehere and Nate Prosser will come out of the lineup for Robert Hagg and Erik Gustafsson, both of whom sat the previous two games.
Gostisbehere and Prosser had rough games defensively on Monday night. Prosser's stay in the lineup was likely to be short, but the decision to sit Gostisbehere is interesting. Among all NHL defensemen since Feb. 24, Gostisbehere ranks first in shots with 38 and is tied for first in goals with five.
"There were a couple of other occasions where Shayne had tough nights defensively that we still gave him the opportunity to come back the next game and play, but it's been a trend here defensively," Vigneault said. "He can be better than he has and we have some options.
"Gus and Ghost sort of play the same type of game — puck-moving, defending is something that they have to stay on top of and both guys can play the power play."
• Since the start of last season, the Flyers are 5-0-1 against the Rangers, outscoring them 26-15.
Tonight is a good opportunity for the Flyers as the rest of the East Division is idle (aside from the Rangers, of course).
The Flyers are three points back of the Bruins and six points back of the Penguins. Boston has played one more game than the Flyers, while Pittsburgh has played three more.
• Pavel Buchnevich and Adam Fox are off the NHL's COVID protocol list and will play against the Flyers.
James van Riemsdyk-Sean Couturier-Joel Farabee
Scott Laughton-Kevin Hayes-Travis Konecny
Michael Raffl-Claude Giroux-Jakub Voracek
Andy Andreoff-Connor Bunnaman-Nolan Patrick
Ivan Provorov-Justin Braun
Travis Sanheim-Philippe Myers
Robert Hagg-Erik Gustafsson
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