N.J.-born Stolarz to make history; Manning out of Flyers' lineup
As expected, goalie Anthony Stolarz will make his NHL debut Sunday night against visiting Calgary at the Wells Fargo Center.
Stolarz, 22, will have his parents, three brothers, and numerous friends among his group of supporters at the 7:30 p.m. game.
"It's going to be exciting. I'm happy to share this moment with them," Stolarz said after Sunday's morning skate in Voorhees. "....I going to go out and enjoy it. You only play your first game once."
He has been the Flyers' backup 26 times during the last few years without getting into a game. He will become the first New Jersey-born goalie to play in the NHL.
"For me, it was all about being patient and working hard," Stolarz said. "The coaches told me just be ready because I would get the opportunity, and it was my job to show them I was ready."
In the last year, Stolarz said, he has matured and his skate pushes are "more crisper and I pay more attention to details." That, he said, should help him make the transition from the AHL.
In another development, defenseman Brandon Manning, who saw limited third-period time because of an injury in Friday's 3-2 loss to the Rangers, will be out of the lineup. The Flyers wouldn't be specific about the injury, but Manning may have concussion symptoms.
Michael Del Zotto will take Manning's spot in the lineup.
Coach Dave Hakstol said he and the coaching staff had "all the confidence in the world" in Del Zotto, who returns to the lineup after a three-game benching.
On Saturday, Manning said he felt good and that would be ready to play, but he apparently had a setback.
Stolarz will become the first New Jersey-born goalie to play in the NHL. He was born in Edison and grew up in Jackson, near Great Adventure.
"I'm sure there will be a couple of minutes where there will be nerves or jitters, but I'm sure Stolie will work his way into the game very quickly," Hakstol said.
Stolarz has been "doing the work in order to develop and grow," Hakstol said. "...I see a consistent level in him. That's probably the biggest difference from last year."
The Flyers (9-10-3) will be trying to end a two-game losing streak. They are just 5-5-2 at home.
Oddly, Calgary (10-12-1) has a better record on the road (7-5-1) than it does at home (3-7).