The Philadelphia Flyers welcomed a few familiar faces back to the ice Tuesday morning.
Defensemen Rasmus Ristolainen and Marc Staal were two of the first players on the ice, donning yellow non-contact jerseys. Staal has been injured since Oct. 20 and is coming up on Week 4 of his 4-to-6 week timeline. Ristolainen has been out with a lower-body injury since the preseason, and has dealt with a few setbacks to boot.
Of his injury, Staal said “. . . just slid awkwardly into the boards. His knee – you’ve probably seen it – his knee just went into my rib.” Staal won’t play against the Carolina Hurricanes on Wedneaday, but there is a chance he’s available over the weekend.
Ristolainen hopes to be back “sooner rather than later”, and shared that his injury was a lower-body injury.
Joining those two were goaltenders Carter Hart and Felix Sandstrom. Hart confirmed after practice that his ‘illness’ was actually food poisoning.
“I was feeling good, ready to go for Friday or Saturday, and then got food poisoning. Friday I woke up in the middle of the night – Friday morning sicker than a dog. Couldn’t go and couldn’t really eat anything or keep anything down Saturday as well,” Hart explained. “Just bad fish.”
Sandstrom returned to the Philadelphia Flyers on Nov. 4 after his conditioning assignment with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms was cut short due to injury. As of now, he’s on the Flyers’ injured reserve and a timetable on his return has yet to be established.
The Flyers‘ emphasis on playing with proximity to the net continues, as players rotated playing from behind the net as well as in front of the goaltender. Head coach John Tortorella identified this as a weakness in the 2-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks. More specifically, he said the team’s chances were not “high-quality”.
In addition, Tortorella was not ready to confirm the Philadelphia Flyers’ starting goaltender for Wednesday night. The Flyers bench boss also didn’t divulge whether or not Bobby Brink and Egor Zamula would draw back into the lineup after sitting out against the Los Angeles Kings.