For the third time in six games, rookie defenseman Travis Sanheim will be out of the Flyers lineup.
In Tuesday’s game against visiting Florida, the Flyers will use the same lines and pairings that produced an 8-2 rout of Washington on Saturday.
The only change: Michal Neuvirth will replace Brian Elliott in net.
Sanheim, 21, is sitting out for the second straight game, but he is taking the benchings in stride.
“We have seven good ‘D’ right now, and obviously there’s going to be a guy sitting, and it happened to be me the other night,” he said, referring to the win over the Capitals. “Actually, it was a learning experience. I think I can gain a lot from watching and seeing some of those guys and how they handle themselves in certain situations.”
The Flyers’ projected defensive pairings for Tuesday: Ivan Provorov and Andrew MacDonald, Shayne Gostisbehere and Robert Hagg, and Brandon Manning and Radko Gudas.
Flyers coach Dave Hakstol and general manager Ron Hextall have said they don’t want their young players sitting too much.
Hakstol was asked about the threshold of how many games he would have a young player, such as Sanheim, sit out.
“I don’t have a number there,” Hakstol said, “but young players have to play. That doesn’t mean they have to play every game. But certainly they have to learn both off the ice, on the ice, practice, game-wise, and continue to grow. Every player is probably a little different in terms of what that number is.”
Sanheim said his goal was to “play every night, and if I can’t do that right away, it’s something I want to get to.”
In three games, Sanheim has no points and is minus-2. He struggled in his NHL debut against the Kings, then played well against Anaheim and Nashville.
“I’ve been very happy with Travis’ play,” Hakstol said. “He’s going to keep growing and continue to be a big part of our group. He’s got a great attitude and a great perspective in terms of being able to handle all the different situations that come his way.”
Said Sanheim: “Ultimately, as a young guy, there’s a lot of things you need to work on. For me, it’s just working hard in practice and getting better every day. I just want to establish myself as an everyday player.”
To his credit, Sanheim is staying upbeat.
“I’ve been through this before. My first year in junior, I didn’t play right away and was a healthy scratch for five games there,” he said. “I’ve been through the process before. I understand the situation I’m in, and ultimately it’s up to me whether or not I want to play every night. I have to show them I’m worthy of that. Obviously, it’s going to maybe take some time, but I’m willing to put in the work.”
Jonathan Huberdeau leads Florida with three goals. … Right winger Owen Tippett, Florida’s top pick (10th overall) in the June draft, will make his NHL debut tonight and be on a line with Jamie McGinn and Jared McCann. … This will be the Flyers’ second game of a five-game homestand, which matches their longest of the season. … Neuvirth (2.05 GAA, .926 save percentage) will make his second start in six games. He will oppose Roberto Luongo (3.05 GAA, .905).