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Flyers’ Star Defenseman Returns from Injured Reserve; What it Means



Jamie Drysdale
The Flyers are just 6-7-3 since Jamie Drysdale suffered an upper-body injury on Feb. 25. (Photo: AP)

With a spot in the 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs on the line, the Philadelphia Flyers are getting another stud defenseman back in the lineup.

The Flyers announced on Monday morning that star rearguard Jamie Drysdale would be returning to the lineup against the New York Islanders for Monday night’s game, and he was subsequently activated from injured reserve shortly thereafter.

Drysdale, 21, has missed the last 16 games with an upper-body injury after taking a heavy hit from Jansen Harkins in the Feb. 25 game against Pittsburgh. Since Drysdale has been out, the Flyers have gone just 6-7-3, The Flyers are also 27th in the NHL in goals scored since Feb. 26, making Drysdale’s extended absence even more pronounced.

Fellow defenseman Nick Seeler just returned over the weekend after a lengthy recovery of his own, which means the Flyers now have a whopping nine defensemen on their roster.

Neither Adam Ginning nor Ronnie Attard participated in line rushes at morning skate on Monday, so neither is expected to be in the lineup against New York on Monday night. If they remain out, the Flyers could re-assign both players to the AHL in order to join the Lehigh Valley Phantoms for a playoff push of their own.

It’s worth noting that the Flyers have already used all four of their post-NHL trade deadline call-ups, so Ginning and Attard can only be re-called on emergency conditions from here on out.

At the moment, Rasmus Ristolainen is the only other Flyers defenseman on the shelf who could return this season, but the odds of that happening are dropping by the day.

But, for Drysdale, he’ll make his return on a defense pairing with Seeler. From a stylistic point of view, this makes the most sense, especially since Sean Walker was dealt to Colorado in early March.

Together, Seeler and Walker were one of the most effective and efficient pairings in the league, and Drysdale will get a crack at trying to replicate that success now that he’s healthy again.

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