Series (Game 4 of 4)

Boston leads 3-1

Game 1: Wednesday, December 1st
Game 2: Saturday, December 11th
Game 3: Thursday, January 13th
Game 4: Sunday, March 27th

Bruins 2

(42-23-10, 94 pts)

Flyers 1

(45-20-10, 100 pts)

Coverage: RDS

7:00 PM ET, March 27, 2011

Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

1 2 3 T
BOS 0 1 12
PHI 1 0 01

B. Marchand (Bruins - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

T. Thomas (Bruins - G): Saves: 27, Save Pct.: .964

K. Versteeg (Flyers - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

Bruins-Flyers Preview


The Philadelphia Flyers are headed to the playoffs, and trying to create breathing room as they eye the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

The Boston Bruins are looking to join them in the postseason, and Tim Thomas is likely to have a direct impact.

Thomas should be back in goal looking to help the Bruins clinch a playoff berth by continuing his dominance of the Flyers on Sunday night.

Philadelphia (45-19-10) has clinched a return to the postseason, leading the East by two points over Southeast Division-best Washington, and four ahead of Pittsburgh for first place in the Atlantic with eight games left.

While the Flyers are in a tight race for seeding, the Bruins (41-23-10) just need a win Sunday to reach the postseason for the fourth straight year under Claude Julien.

"We have to approach the game like a playoff game," defenseman Dennis Seidenberg said.

Thomas is expected to start for the Bruins and help them try to lock down a berth after Tuukka Rask stopped 22 shots in a 1-0 home loss to the New York Rangers on Saturday. Boston outshot New York 12-1 in the third period, but the offense faltered after outscoring opponents 11-1 while winning the previous two games.

Thomas stopped 54 shots in those contests, and his 2.02 goals-against average leads the NHL.

He's been outstanding against the Flyers, going 9-2-2 with a 2.28 GAA and one shutout, and he's won all five meetings in Philadelphia with a 1.80 GAA.

Thomas made 41 saves in a 3-0 win there Dec. 1. However, he needed some offensive support while making 30 saves in a 7-5 home victory in the most recent meeting Jan. 13.

The Bruins are 9-1-2 in their last 12 regular-season visits to Philadelphia, winning the last two by a combined 8-1 score.

Thomas isn't the only Bruin enjoying success against the Flyers, as David Krejci has two goals and 11 assists in 14 career games. He's recorded at least one point seven of the last eight games versus Philadelphia, totaling nine assists and 10 points.

The Flyers will be trying to build off Saturday's 4-1 road victory over the New York Islanders, as James van Riemsdyk recorded his first NHL hat trick. Philadelphia has 100 points for the first time since getting 101 in 2005-06.

"We still didn't play to where we're capable of, but it's definitely a step in the right direction," said van Riemsdyk, who has a career-high 19 goals. "We can build off this and keep getting better as the season winds down."

Claude Giroux had two assists in his 200th career game, and leads the team with 46 and 70 points -- both career highs. The right wing has accumulated 18 points over the last 16 contests, but has managed just one assist in three games against Boston this season.

Boston's Mark Recchi, who had stints with the Flyers from 1992-95 and 1999-2004, needs one point to tie Hall of Famer Paul Coffey for 12th on the NHL's career scoring list with 1,531. The league's highest-scoring active player at 43, Recchi is in his 22nd season.