In an attempt to shake his team from a growing slump, Flyers coach Dave Hakstol is making several lineup changes for Saturday's matinee at the Wells Fargo Center.
The Flyers, losers of five straight, will host Tampa Bay before traveling to Columbus and facing the suddenly powerful Blue Jackets on Sunday evening.
Hakstol's new lineup at practice Friday had the team's three top players - Claude Giroux, Wayne Simmonds, and Jake Voracek - on separate lines.
"Sometimes I think it's good to switch it up a little bit," said Giroux, who has just three points and is minus-8 over the last eight games. "We'll see how it goes."
The Flyers, who barely hold the Eastern Conference's last wild-card spot, have lost seven of their last eight.
"The panic button hasn't been hit yet, but it's coming up closely," Matt Read said after practice in Voorhees. ". . . We have to play a lot better than we are right now and start finding our game so that when it is playoff time and we're pushing for a playoff spot, we know what we're doing."
The Flyers have a total of just 12 goals in the last eight games.
"When you're not scoring goals, something's got to change," Simmonds said of the lineup shuffle.
Read said "you have to be desperate after losing five in a row and just have to go out and work harder than the other team. If you're outworking the other team, things are bound to turn around."
At practice, Hakstol had three new lines as the Flyers prepared to face a Steven Stamko-less Lighting team that is within three points of them.
Top-line center Giroux had a new right winger, Read, with Michael Raffl still on the left side.
"One of his best attributes is that he always finds a way to get open and it makes it easier for the wingers when you get the puck because you know he's going to be open," Read said of Giroux.
Right winger Voracek was dropped to the second line, which had a new center, Sean Couturier, and Travis Konecny on the left.
The third line had Brayden Schenn centering Simmonds, with Nick Cousins and Dale Weise alternating at left wing.
Only the fourth line - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare centering Chris VandeVelde and Boyd Gordon - was the same as the last game. Gordon, however, could be replaced by Roman Lyubimov.
Michal Neuvirth is expected to return in goal for the first time since he injured his left knee Nov. 12. The return of Neuvirth might refresh Steve Mason, who has appeared fatigued lately after starting nine straight games and 22 of the last 24.
Mason has a 4.05 goals-against average and .844 save percentage in the last five games, all losses.
Coach Dave Hakstol said he expected his goalies to divide the starting duties over the next two games.
"I think everybody's looked at themselves in the mirror and [asked], 'What can you do better individually to help the team?' " Mason said.
Breakaways. The Flyers have lost 3-0 and 4-2 decisions to Tampa, which was also without Stamkos (knee) in those games. In the latter game, the Lightning scored three goals in the final 6 minutes, 32 seconds to erase a 2-1 deficit Nov. 23. . . . Hakstol said Thursday's day off "will be good for everybody, mentally and physically." . . .Giroux: "It's a long season. You can't get too low or too high."