Photo: NBCS Philadelphia
Thursday delivered some bad news for two Metropolitan Division teams on the injury front as the Philadelphia Flyers announced forward James Van Riemsdyk will miss 4-6 weeks (the remainder of the regular season) after suffering a hand injury in their 5-2 win over the Washington Capitals on Wednesday while the Carolina Hurricanes announced defenseman Brett Pesce will miss 4-6 months after having a procedure done on his right shoulder, the teams announced before they played one another at Wells Fargo Center.
Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault told the media that Van Riemsdyk has a broken left index finger and that “the x-rays don’t really look good.” Forward Joel Farabee was recalled from the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms before the game.
In 66 games this season, the 30-year-old has 19 goals, 40 points, and a +5 rating. Losing Van Riemsdyk, a perennial 25-30 goal scorer during his NHL career, is a big loss for the red-hot Flyers, who have won a season-high seven in a row and trail the Capitals for the top spot in the division by only one point.
The injury is expected to cost Van Riemsdyk the remainder of the regular season, in addition, to possibly the first few games of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs should the Flyers qualify.
The Flyers average a league-high 3.79 goals-per-game since January 7 and are also second in the NHL with a .75 points percentage in that time, which only trails the Boston Bruins (.771).
The Hurricanes suffer another big loss on the backend after losing Dougie Hamilton (broken left fibula) until late March on January 17 in addition to both of their goalies. Defenseman Sami Vatanen, who was acquired in a trade from the New Jersey Devils at the NHL Trade Deadline, has yet to play a game with them and has not played since February 1. The Hurricanes announced earlier in the day that he suffered a setback during his recovery from a lower-body injury.
Despite some losses due to injury on the blueline, the Hurricanes’ average of 2.86 goals-against per game is 11th in the NHL. They trail the New York Islanders by three points for the second wild-card in the Eastern Conference but own a game in hand on them.
The 25-year-old had four goals, 18 points, and a +7 rating in 61 games this season while averaging a team-high 3:16 per game on the penalty kill and 21:53 overall, the third-highest on the Hurricanes.
Defenseman Hadyn Fleury will replace Pesce in the Hurricanes’ lineup.
The Flyers did not issue a press release.
From The Hurricanes
Don Waddell, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that Hurricanes defenseman Brett Pesce underwent surgery on his right shoulder. His expected recovery time is four to six months.
Pesce, 25, registered 18 points (4g, 14a) in 61 NHL games with the Hurricanes this season. The 6’4″, 201-pound defenseman injured his right shoulder in the second period of Carolina’s 6-3 win at Toronto on Feb. 22. Pesce has posted 102 points (20g, 82a) in 350 career NHL games with Carolina. He tallied six assists in 15 playoff games during the Hurricanes’ run to the 2019 Eastern Conference Final. The Tarrytown, N.Y., native was drafted by Carolina in the third round, 66th overall, of the 2013 NHL Draft.
By Harrison Brown