Flyers Training Camp
Flyers Injuries: Atkinson Will Miss Opener, No Word on Ristolainen
Cam Atkinson, projected to be the Philadelphia Flyers’ top-line right winger, will miss their opener Thursday against visiting New Jersey, coach John Tortorella confirmed.
Speaking after the Flyers’ practice Wednesday in Voorhees, Tortorella said Atkinson was day to day. The Flyers say he has an upper-body injury, but won’t be specific.
Atkinson, 33, who had 23 goals and won the Bobby Clark Trophy as the team’s MVP last season, did not play in any of the six preseason games. He skated Wednesday, but not with any line, and he left practice early.
The right winger was not available to the media.
Tortorella, who expressed optimism throughout camp that Atkinson would play in the opener, said there was no setback. “He’s just not ready,” he said.
With Atkinson sidelined, there will be a trickle-down effect. The right wingers at practice Wednesday were, in order, Travis Konecny, Owen Tippett, Wade Allison, and Hayden Hodgson.
Egor Zamula on making #Flyers’ opening roster: “It’s a dream come true.”
— Sam Carchidi (@BroadStBull) October 12, 2022
Before it was known that Atkinson would miss the opener, center Kevin Hayes said he was “huge for this team. He’s one of our best players. I mean, he’s an elite player in this league and has been. He’s been an All-Star.”
Meanwhile, Tortorella had not not yet talked to the trainers when he met with the media and had no update on defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen, who left the Philadelphia Flyers’ practice early. The almost-28-year-old Ristolainen missed the first two games last season with an injury.
As for expectations, Tortorella didn’t want to talk about how many points he wanted the Flyers to accumulate or if he had playoff aspirations.
“We need to go about doing our business day by day to try to improve,” he said. “That’s my expectation. Hopefully we improve each and every day.”