Blue Jackets shoot for 10th home win in a row against Flyers

As the Columbus Blue Jackets remain in the mix for the top spot in the Eastern Conference, they're also trying to right the ship with just over two weeks to play in the regular season.

Looking to avoid their first three-game skid, the Blue Jackets also will try to extend their mastery at home over the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday.

Columbus goes for its 10th straight win over Philadelphia at Nationwide Arena dating to December 2005. The Blue Jackets have limited the Flyers to two goals or less seven times during the winning streak.

This season, Columbus is tied for third in the league with 78 goals allowed at home -- an average of 2.11 per game. The Flyers, meanwhile, have scored 86 times on the road to rank 24th with 2.32 goals per game.

With 101 points, Columbus (47-19-7) is third in the Metropolitan Division, two points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins and three in back of the Eastern Conference-leading Washington Capitals. Among the Blue Jackets' nine games remaining are one each against the Penguins and Capitals.

One night after being beaten soundly by the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Blue Jackets fell 2-1 in a shootout to Washington on Thursday. Sergei Bobrovsky made 44 saves through overtime and remains one win shy of 40 for the first time in his seven NHL seasons, including two with Philadelphia.

"Some nights, the game pushes you to be better and help the guys more and some games you just have to support them and make the timely saves," Bobrovsky told the Blue Jackets' official website. "I don't want lots of attention, I just enjoy what I'm doing."

Bobrovsky definitely enjoys facing the team he broke in with, posting a 7-1-0 record with a 1.85 goals-against average, a .936 save percentage and a shutout. That includes a 4-0-0 record at home, where he has turned away 101 of 108 shots.

Cam Atkinson has scored two of his team-leading 33 goals against the Flyers in 2016-17 to power the Blue Jackets' offense. Five players have one each in the season series.

Philadelphia (34-31-8) has split the first two games of a four-game road trip with a 3-1 victory over the Minnesota Wild on Thursday.

"We've played a few of these, but we played very well tonight," Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said.

The Flyers have alternated wins and losses in its last five games and haven't won consecutive road games since late January.

"We're focusing on our game and we'll go from there," forward Claude Giroux told

After this game, the Flyers close their road trip Sunday against Pittsburgh, and success this weekend could give Philadelphia a much-needed boost toward a playoff spot. The club is 12th in the East, six points behind the New York Islanders for the second wild-card spot.

First, the Flyers need to get more players involved in the offense against the Blue Jackets. Travis Konecny and Brayden Schenn have each scored twice, but no other player has one goal, including Wayne Simmonds.

Simmonds needs one goal to reach 30 for second time in nine NHL seasons but hasn't had a point through two matchups. He has scored once in his last eight road games.

Steve Mason is struggling this month, posting a 2-3-1 record with a 2.62 goals-against average and .910 save percentage for the Flyers. He is 0-1-1 against the Blue Jackets this season, stopping 47 of 53 shots.
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