As the Philadelphia Flyers’ training camp drew closer, there was a buzz because the new sheriff in town, John Tortorella, had the players working harder and arriving early to get ready for his demanding training camps.
A new, intriguing era was about to begin, with the colorful Tortorella putting his stamp on the team.
And, then …
The buzz turned to concern because top-line center Sean Couturier, the team’s best all-around player, suffered an injury that could sideline him for a long time. He will be re-examined during training camp, which starts Thursday in Voorhees.
The Flyers were already missing their top defensive player, Ryan Ellis, who is sidelined indefinitely because of a pelvic injury. The club plans to put him on the LTIR list at some point.
Losing your top offensive and defensive players is disastrous for most teams, especially one as fragile as the Flyers.
So Philly’s brass waits anxiously or a medical update on Couturier, whose injury is believed related to his surgically repaired back. If he only misses a few weeks, the Flyers can still be competitive.
But if he misses all or most of the season, the Philadelphia Flyers are doomed, and will be in the thick of the race for center Connor Bedard, a generational player widely regarded as the No. 1 pick in the 2023 draft.
Actually he told his @NHLFlyers teammates he was retiring after last season. In any event, Yandle should be remembered for his remarkable streak and not his poor final season with #Flyers. Class guy. https://t.co/QGH36jSvk6
— Sam Carchidi (@BroadStBull) September 20, 2022
NHL and National Hockey Now
Philly Hockey Now: Sean Couturier is in limbo. We take a look at how the Philadelphia Flyers’ centers may look if Couturier is sidelined for a significant amount of time. Philadelphia Flyers.
Philly Hockey Now: Center Artem Anisimov, 34, is reunited with Flyers coach John Tortorella. Will he stick on a PTO contract? Philadelphia Flyers.
Philly Hockey Now: Keith Yandle, who set the NHL’s Ironman streak while playing for the Flyers last season, officially retired. Remember him for his remarkable achievement — and not for his poor season with the Orange and Black. Philadelphia Flyers.
Colorado Hockey Now: Nathan MacKinnon, 27, signed an eight-year contract extension that has an annual $12.6 million cap hit. That makes him the highest-paid player in the NHL, ahead of Connor McDavid’s $12.5 million annual cap hit. MacKinnon’s new deal starts in 2023-24. Colorado Hockey Now.
Montreal Hockey Now: P.K. Subban, 33, represented the best of hockey, writes Marc Dumont. Montreal Canadiens.
New York Islanders Hockey Now: Zdeno Chara, 45, went out in style. New York Islanders.
Pittsburgh Hockey Now: After a slow start to his career, Josh Maniscalco has steadied himself as he climbs the ladder toward the NHL. Pittsburgh Penguins.
Detroit Hockey Now: Kevin Allen ranks the rookies’ chances of making the Detroit roster. Detroit Red Wings.
Vegas Hockey Now. Vegas officially changes to gold jerseys. Vegas Golden Knights.