NHL

Flyers rested and ready after bye week to face Devils

Heading into a Saturday matchup in Philadelphia, the Flyers are coming off their bye week and the New Jersey Devils are coming off a loss in Montreal the night before.

That doesn't mean the mindset of each team is much different.

The Flyers have had to think about two straight losses on back-to-back nights to the Washington Capitals and Boston Bruins by a combined score of 11-3 for the past seven days. The Devils are coming off a lackluster game on Friday at home after a successful trip.

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Suffice to say, both teams are raring to get back on the ice and get back on track -- even though one has had significantly more rest than the other recently.

"We have a lot of hockey to play and we're still in the playoff picture so it's easy to be optimistic in here," Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds told his team's website. "Our commitment to doing everything. Back-checking, playing stronger in our defensive zone and creating offensively. We just have to play more like we did at the beginning of the year."

Despite going into their bye with two tough losses, the Flyers are hoping to come back recharged, although they are expecting some rust early.

"In one regard, you don't get the result that you deserve, but for me the biggest thing is just our overall performance," Flyers coach Dave Hakstol told his team's website. "Coming out of a break? That might be a tough thing to do is to put it all together, but I think the energy will be there both mentally and physically. That's important to the overall performance."

The Devils, who dwell in the depths of the Eastern Conference standings, had a three-game winning streak snapped Friday. Their penalty killing did not help, giving up three-power-play goals to the Canadiens in the loss, but the fact that they registered just 17 shots on goal was the bigger sign.

"I don't think it was them," Devils left winger Miles Wood told northjersey.com after Friday's loss. "I think it was us. We shot ourselves in the foot. There were a lot of calls. We put ourselves in the box. That was a game key, staying out of the box."

Devils coach John Hynes agreed with the rookie's assessment.

"We've got to skate a little bit more, be much, much harder on the puck," he told northjersey.com. "On the road trip, we did a much better job. We were strong on the forecheck and when we got into the offensive zone, we made plays. The defensemen did a nice job of delivering pucks to the net and we had bodies there.

"That recipe we had on the road, offensively, was nonexistent tonight."

It also didn't help that Devils No. 1 goaltender Cory Schneider missed Friday's game because of illness. He is expected to play Saturday against the Flyers, which should be a significant boost.

Defenseman Andy Greene (hand) missed his eighth consecutive game and is still skating on his own. Hynes said he won't play Saturday, but center Vernon Fiddler (lower body) could play. He has missed 12 straight games, although he practiced with the team Thursday.