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Owen Tippett Ready for First Return Against Florida Panthers

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Florida Panthers Owen Tippett Philadelphia Flyers
Owen Tippett will play his former Florida Panthers in Sunrise for the first time since being traded to the Philadelphia Flyers in the Claude Giroux nearly two years ago. // AP photo

For the first time since the Florida Panthers traded him to the Philadelphia Flyers almost two years ago, Owen Tippett will make his return to South Florida.

A lot has changed since he was sent packing in the deal that made Claude Giroux a Panther.

After all, he missed his first opportunity to face off in the building he spent the first x years of his career with an upper-body injury early in the 2022-23 season.

This is going to be special,” he told NHL.com on Monday. “This is my first time back, and while it has been a couple of years and isn’t exactly fresh, I do have a lot of good memories in this building and with a lot of the guys who are over there.”

Tippett, who had six goals and 14 points in 42 games in his final season as a Panther, has become a bonafide goal scorer for the Flyers.

He scored a career-high 27 goals and 49 points in his first full season in Philadelphia and has 18 goals and 30 points through 46 games this year.

And it was enough to earn him an eight-year deal carrying a $6.2 million annual price tag.

“It is pretty special, and it is not even about the dollars for me,” Tippett said. “It is just knowing that Philly will be home for the next eight years, being able to settle in and have a routine here. It is pretty cool, and I am looking forward to it.

“It has been a lot of fun. The group we have here is pretty special. The chemistry within the group makes coming to the rink a lot more enjoyable, and that shows on the ice. We compete every night. I think we take some teams by surprise. That’s a lot of fun.”

Tippett does not have many hard feelings towards his Panthers exit, either.

With Florida going all-in at the 2021-22 trade deadline while pushing for their first Presidents’ Trophy in franchise history, Tippett admittedly had a tough time.

Between multiple trips to AHL Charlotte and a few games as a healthy scratch, Tippett tried to keep a positive mindset as he heard his name included in countless trade rumors.

But he is happy to have ended up where he is because of it.

“It can be tough when you hear your name in rumors like that,” Tippett said. “You just have to try and focus on your game. At the same time, you see that there is potential. As the weeks passed, it seemed more realistic that I would be moving on. I just tried not to get too caught up in the rumors and try to control the things I could control.

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“I was going back and forth for a while, but the last time I got sent to Charlotte, it seemed more and more likely I was going to be moved. I went into it with a positive attitude, and going to Philly was a fresh start and a new opportunity. I knew a couple of guys here, and that made it easier. But it has been great. I am really happy here.”

GAME NOTES

Nick Cousins will return to the lineup for the Panthers after sustaining a concussion on Jan. 2.

He will slot in on Line 3 with Anton Lundell and Eetu Luostarinen.

Will Lockwood shed his yellow, non-contact jersey and will begin to ramp up his recovery from a concussion suffered on Jan. 19.

— The Flyers are running with 11 forwards and seven defeseman.

The starting goalies: Samuel Ersson is expected to go for the Philadelphia Flyers; Anthony Stolarz will start for the Florida Panthers against his former team.

ON DECK

PHILADELPHIA FLYERS @ FLORIDA PANTHERS

  • When: Tuesday, 7 p.m.
  • Where: Amerant Bank Arena, Sunrise
  • TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida, ESPN+
  • Radio: WPOW 96.5-FM2; WBZT 1230-AM (Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); SiriusXM
  • Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932, NHL app
  • Local Odds — Panthers Favored: Money Line (-200); Puck line (-1.5, +120); Over/Under 6.5 (-140/+115)
  • Season Series — At Florida: Feb. 6; March 7. At Philadelphia: March 24.  
  • Last season: Philadelphia won 2-1
  • All-time regular season series: Philadelphia leads 57-37-6, 7 ties
  • Up Next for the Panthers: Thursday vs. Washington, 7 p.m.

PROJECTED FLORIDA PANTHERS (31-14-4) LINES

17 Evan Rodrigues // 16 Sasha Barkov// 13 Sam Reinhart

23 Carter Verhaeghe // 9 Sam Bennett // 19 Matthew Tkachuk

27 Eetu Luostarinen// 15 Anton Lundell // 21 Nick Cousins

12 Jonah Gadjovich// 82 Kevin Stenlund //94 Ryan Lomberg

42 Gus Forsling // 5 Aaron Ekblad

77 Niko Mikkola // 62 Brandon Montour

91 Oliver Ekman-Larsson // 7 Dmitry Kulikov

41 Anthony Stolarz

72 Sergei Bobrovsky

Injured: Nick Cousins (concussion-IR),

Scratched: Josh Mahura, Steven Lorentz

PROJECTED PHILADELPHIA FLYERS (25-19-6) LINES

74 Owen Tippett // 14 Sean Couturier // 89 Cam Atkinson

86 Joel Farabee // 48 Morgan Frost // 11 Travis Konecny

71 Tyson Foerster // 25 Ryan Poehling // 27 Noah Cates

21 Scott Laughton // 19 Garnett Hathaway

6 Travis Sanheim // 55 Rasmus Ristolainen

8 Cam York // 9 Jamie Drysdale

24 Nick Seeler // 26 Sean Walker

// 5 Egor Zamula

33 Samuel Ersson

40 Cal Peterson

Scratched: Marc Staal, Nicolas Deslauriers, Ollie Lycksell

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