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Weekend Preview – Week 21

WEEK 21 of the 2023/24 Elite Ice Hockey League season and the Flyers entertain the Nottingham Panthers on Saturday who lie a place below them in the league as both teams strive to reach a top eight spot. It’s then a final visit in the regular season to the Guildford Spectrum to meet the Flames on Sunday night.

SATURDAY FEBRUARY 10th  v NOTTINGHAM PANTHERS @ FIFE ICE ARENA – FACE OFF 7.15pm

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This will be the third meeting with the Panthers this season and the second at Fife Ice Arena. Panthers prevailed last time out coming from 3-1 down to win by the odd goal in seven in what was the Flyers first home game of 2024. The following weekend Nottingham were in Belfast for two games against the Giants. On the Friday night it was a close encounter with the Panthers opening within 90 seconds but that was it for them and the Giants got the next two goals to win the game. The following night the Giants won 4-2 but again it was a keenly contested encounter. Not so the following Saturday when the Giants visited the Motorpoint Arena and comfortably won 7-2 which was followed by a 5-1 defeat on the Sunday night in Dundee. A midweek home game against the Glasgow Clan saw the Panthers take a 3-0 lead but a last period collapse ended with them losing the game 6-3. A home game against the league leading Steelers saw Sheffield edge it 3-2 before a trip to Manchester where they were blanked 3-0. Last weekend it was a double header against the Coventry Blaze with the first game at home on Saturday night going all the way to a shootout where the visitors prevailed which meant it was a season equaling high losing streak of 8 games now for the Panthers. On Sunday night however they snapped that streak despite an incredible opening minute that saw the Blaze score twice before the Panthers hit six without reply to take the victory.

Last League Visit from Panthers

Overall Elite League Home Record Against Panthers

P 28 W 12 L 16 F 88 A 101

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The Flyers will be looking to pick up their first two points of the season against the Panthers who have won the opening two encounters.

The last five home games against the Panthers have gone as follows for the Flyers:  L-W-L-W-L.

Panthers and Flyers have the joint longest winless streaks this season which stand at eight games.

The Panthers have yet to put more than two games together as a win streak which is the lowest of all teams.

The Panthers are 5th across all teams in Shots on Goal differential with a minus 65, the Flyers are last with a minus 437

Across all EIHL competitions this season Flyers have scored an average of 2.7 goals per game with 2.63 being the Panthers average. Panthers have conceded an average of 3.66 goals per game with the Flyers averaging exactly the same.

The Flyers have five different players each with a single goal in the two previous meetings with the Panthers this term. The Panthers top marksmen are Hugo Roy and Mathieu Lemay each with two goals and the Panthers have six different scorers of their eight goals.

Pic Credit Jillian McFarlane and Derek Young

SUNDAY FEBRUARY 11th v GUILDFORD FLAMES @ GUILDFORD SPECTRUM – FACE OFF 6.00pm

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The last meeting between the sides was mid-January when the Flames won in overtime in Kirkcaldy. Since then the Flames have been less consistent than they were to finish 2023 that saw them lose only one game in nine. After their win in Fife they returned home and beat the Manchester Storm the following night. In their next two games at home they dropped points as they lost to the Coventry Blaze in overtime then the Cardiff Devils, against whom the Flames have a strong record in recent times, took the extra point in a shootout. The following Saturday the Devils turned the tables and shut the Flames out in Cardiff but Guildford bounced back the following night with a 5-2 win at the Spectrum against the Belfast Giants. Last weekend saw only the one game for the Flames as they travelled to Dundee and collected the two points in an overtime win. Ahead of this weekend, where they entertain both the Dundee Stars and Flyers, the Flames played the second leg of their Challenge Cup semi-final. Poised at 0-0 after the first leg in Glasgow the Flames advanced to the Final in Sheffield on March 13th with a 6-3 win on the night.

Last League Visit to Flames

Overall Elite League Away Record Against Flames

P 16 W 7 L 9 F 38 A 53

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The Flames have a seven game winning streak active against the Flyers on home ice, their best ever sequence in all EIHL competitions.

The Flyers are winless in their last five meetings with the Flames and will be looking to avoid being swept at the Spectrum in consecutive seasons.

The Flyers top goal scorers against the Flames this term in all EIHL competitions are Kyle Osterberg and Max Humitz who each have two goals with Flyers having eight different scorers of their ten goals. The Flames top marksman is Peter Crinella with four goals and the Flames have nine different scorers of their 16 goals.

Across all EIHL competitions this season Flyers have scored an average of 2.7 goals per game with 3.13 being the Flames average. Flames have conceded an average of 2.91 goals per game with the Flyers averaging 3.66

The Flames remain the last active team who have yet to score a hat trick against the Flyers in all EIHL competitions.

Guildford are the only team yet to record a shorthanded goal this season.

Pic Credit Guildford Flames
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