Philadelphia Flyers vs. Pittsburgh Penguins Pick & Prediction JANUARY 8th 2024

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Philadelphia Flyers coach John Tortorella is never shy about benching players. If the longtime successful coach is unhappy with a player’s performance, he’ll be scratched.

That’s exactly what happened to Morgan Frost, who sat out Thursday’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Consider the message received.

Frost had one goal and one assist in the Flyers’ 3-2 home win over the Calgary Flames on Saturday. He’ll try to build on that outing when the Flyers host the in-state rival Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday.

“Frosty is a great kid,” Tortorella said. “Very quiet and unassuming, and I guess he’s probably been brought up, you just don’t talk to coaches. It’s different for me. I need the conversation. I think he took a big step and it’s going to help me try to help him. Where it all goes, I don’t know, but at least there’s a path there now.”

The player-coach meeting was obviously successful.

“I just had some things that I kind of wanted to get off my chest and it was a good back-and-forth,” Frost said. “Nothing crazy. … I’m probably a quieter guy, but just to go in there and kind of speak my mind and hear his thoughts and kind of just hash everything out was good. After being out again, I just wanted to come play with energy.”

Travis Konecny and Sean Couturier also scored against Calgary for the Flyers, who had gone 0-2-2 in their previous four games.

Konecny has 10 points — five goals and five assists — during a seven-game points streak.

Goaltender Carter Hart also played another strong game and made 22 saves.

Following a stirring 6-5 victory over the host Boston Bruins on Thursday, the Penguins fell a bit flat in a 3-1 home defeat to the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

Rickard Rakell scored the lone goal for the Penguins, who have dropped two of three following a 5-0-1 stretch.

Goaltender Tristan Jarry made 29 saves, but it wasn’t enough on this particular night.

“There was a lot of the game that we really liked,” Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan said. “I feel like we generated an exorbitant amount of scoring chances. We had a number of Grade-A looks. They just didn’t go in. … We did a lot of things that we set out to accomplish. We just didn’t win on the scoreboard.”

The Penguins managed to hang around and the game wasn’t decided until an empty-net goal at 18:24 of the third period.

“Sometimes that happens. Their goalie played a good game,” Jarry said. “We were putting a lot of pucks on net. Obviously, when we’re hitting the post and we’re trying to get to the net, and try to get rebounds, that’s the game we need to play. Obviously, it didn’t go our way tonight.”

Rakell has four goals in the last seven games after going through a major scoring drought in the first 19 games. His goal with a two-man advantage tied the game at 1 at 7:49 of the third.

“Felt we were right there,” Rakell said. “We had zone time and we created pretty much every shift. It’s a tough bounce, getting those disallowed, but I didn’t think they affected us too much at the start of the game because they gave us momentum to keep going.”

–Field Level Media

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