Evgeni Malkin Injury: Misses Practice, Could Miss Game 6

Pittsburgh Penguins among road betting favorites in Wednesday NHL action

In all, the Flyers played like a desperate team and that's just the kind of approach they needed. Malkin returned to start the second period.

Rinne was solid early after being pulled from the last game. Pittsburgh, which is ahead 2-1 in the best-of-seven series, has also scored exactly five goals in four of their last five road games against the Flyers. And that was before Letang's three giveaways in Game 5.

In a period that saw seven penalties called-and five on the Flyers-it's ironic there were no power-play goals-but there was a short-handed one.

Stephenson didn't crack Washington's opening night roster and later cleared waivers but impressed head coach Barry Trotz early in the season with his urgent play. Filppula also provided an assist on Matt Read's empty net goal to seal the deal.

An apology might not be necessary, but the bottom line is that Toronto Maple Leafs fans likely expect a lot from Kadri - not to mention star center Auston Matthews - as this team tries to fight back from down 3-1 in their series against the Boston Bruins. With just over a minute to go, Vitale laid a thundering hit on Flyers' Daniel Briere, causing chaos between the two teams. A second period goal by Nicklas Backstrom to the high corner of the net was his only blemish of the day as he finished with 28 saves on 29 shots. The playoffs are a series of momentum (swings) - within a period and within a game. This was a Philadelphia team that was streaky throughout the year and had a fair share of ups and downs to get here. At minimum, Toronto would like to see his finishing touch pay off a bit more in the postseason after the agitating center generated 32 goals in each of the past two regular seasons. ".We're going to go out there, play our game and be back for Game 6".

However, Valtteri Filppula scored a goal shorthanded for his second point of the game on a rare rebound off of Matt Murray. But his success was short-lived and in Game 3 he gave up five more goals in a 5-1 loss in Philadelphia.

The Flyers and Penguins went back and forth throughout the game, but it was the Flyers who would prevail late in the game and take Game 5 by a final score of 4-2.

With Elliott having given up 14 goals in four games, the Flyers turned to Michal Neuvirth as their starter for Game 5. It seemed like a stretch Friday when coach Dave Hakstol put Filppula on the top line - Couturier, still far from 100 percent healthy, was dropped to the third unit - and matched him against the irrepressible Crosby.

Much of practice was devoted to the power play, which has gone 1 for 9 in two games without Hornqvist this series. He notably declined to do so in this case, only repeating the "all players are game-time decisions" line.

Both teams battled hard in the third with Pittsburgh continuing to attack Neuvirth, putting scoring chances on the net.

Claude Giroux, Jakub Voracek and Sean Couturier are excellent offensive threats and Shayne Gostisbehere can fire the puck from the back end, but the Flyers have to find a way to shut down or slow down the Penguins. But Pittsburgh was not done and with Murray on the bench and an extra attacker on the ice, the Penguins continued to pepper Neuvirth. Jake Guentzel took a lead pass from Sidney Crosby and was able to elude Andrew MacDonald 's coverage for a shot between Neuvirth's pads.

After missing Game 4 with a lower-body injury, Couturier extended his team's season at least two more days by picking up his second goal of the series.

VOORHEES, N.J. Ignoring the obvious, the Flyers have chosen to believe they can turn it all around and knock the Pittsburgh Penguins out of the playoffs.

The Pittsburgh Penguins will become the third National Hockey League team to punch its ticket to the second round of the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs if they beat the Philadelphia Flyers in Friday night's Game 5 at PPG Paints Arena.

The Flyers first two showings on home ice were brutal and forced them into the situation they were facing in Game 5.

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