PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 26: Ryan Miller #30 of the Buffalo Sabres makes a save against Claude Giroux #28 of the Philadelphia Flyers on October 26 2010 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
The date was January 5th. The Philadelphia Flyers sat 12th in the Eastern Conference with a 19-19-3 record, for a total of 41 points and looking to miss the playoffs for the first time in years. The team then proceeded to go 22-16-3 in the final half of the season and squeaked into the seventh seed in the playoffs with a shootout victory over the New York Rangers.
The rest of the playoffs tell the rest of the story for the Flyers. Upset victories over the Devils, Bruins, and Canadiens setup a final appearance against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Flyers have then taken that run into the playoffs and turned into a 1st place run in the Eastern Conference this season. The lesson in all of this is that if a team makes it into the playoffs, anything can happen when you get there.
The Philadelphia Flyers head into Buffalo with a 26-10-5 record, an Eastern Conference league best. The Flyers are led by Mike Richards and Claude Giroux with 37 and 36 points respectively. They have been a solid team both defensively and offensively, allowing 2.54 goals/game and scoring 3.32 goals/game. The Flyers have had a triumvirate of goaltenders in net, with Sergei Bobrovsky making a name for himself in his rookie year.
The Buffalo Sabres will have Ryan Miller in net and will be nursing a 4-0-1 record in their last five games. Miller has been hot as of late, allowing one goal in his last two games. Thomas Vanek is coming into the game with a four game point streak and Jordon Leopold had a goal and an assist in the 2-1 victory over the Coyotes.
The Sabres are currently eight points back of eighth place Montreal, who will be taking on the Rangers in New York. Game time is 7:30 pm on Versus.