Matt Niskanen Suspended For Game 6
You knew it was coming, it was just a matter of when. Flyers defenseman Matt Niskanen has been suspended for a playoff game for the cross-check on Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher, resulting in Gallagher suffering a broken jaw.
Flyers defenseman Matt Niskanen has been suspended one playoff game for cross-checking Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher during the third period of Wednesday's Game 5 of the First Round series.
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) August 21, 2020
If you haven’t seen the play, here it is.
Ouch 😐 pic.twitter.com/R0lja9mofZ
— Canadiens Montréal (@CanadiensMTL) August 20, 2020
Niskanen has been a fixture on the top of the Flyers defensive pairings since being acquired for Radko Gudas in the offseason. His calming, veteran presence has really allowed Ivan Provorov to settle down and jump up in the play more.
Niskanen’s game so far in this series hasn’t been on the same level as his play before the stoppage. Still, he’s a big part of this defense and we need him. Looking at him to get back to that form after he serves his suspension.
Who replaces Niskanen?
The next defenseman up is Shayne Gostisbehere. Alain Vingualt decided to go with #53 to start the playoff series, despite Robert Hagg playing really solid hockey this year. Logging 17:20 in Game 1, 17:12 in Game 2, he was eventually replaced by Hagg in Game 3 and hasn’t seen the ice since.
A quick guess as to what the defensive pairings could look like tomorrow night.
Provorov – Ghost
Myers – Sanhiem
Hagg – Braun
Ghost has played well with Provorov when given the chance and it’s intriguing for sure. Unfortunately, just because it’s intriguing, doesn’t mean it’ll work. If this pairing gets dominated like Ghost/Braun did, I could see AV doing something like..
Provorov – Sanhiem
Myers – Ghost
Hagg – Braun
Sanhiem/Myers have looked really good in this playoff series. Two young defensemen who don’t look fazed by the pressures of NHL playoff hockey. Possibly seeing Sanny get to play a game with Provorov is really exciting.
Series is 3-2 Philadelphia, there’s bad blood between these two teams now and I CAN’T WAIT for Friday night at 7pm. Tempers will be high and both teams will come out hard. We wanted playoff hockey and we got it.
Sean Coutuirer ended Game 5 with a hit on Artturi Lehkonenv after a empty-net goal, resulting in an end game scrum.
Watch Voracek superman dive at Weber.
Couturier and Lehkonen collide after the empty-net goal and a scrum ensues. pic.twitter.com/t2fkunpRNr
— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) August 20, 2020
The Flyers have another chance to close this series out and move on. Every game this series except Game 2 has been close and I don’t see Game 6 being an exception.
Lets. Go. Flyers.