Claude Giroux Returns To The Ice

18 Dec

Finally, some optimism surrounding the Flyers and their injuries. Claude Giroux not only made the trip to Denver, but was on the ice with his teammates at the Pepsi Center. Wearing a yellow non-contact jersey, Giroux was reportedly taking part in all drills. It is a tremendous sign for the Flyers who have now been without Giroux for three games.

Still the NHL’s leader in points (although he’s now tied with Toronto’s Phil Kessel), Giroux remains out indefinitely after a concussion he sustained on Dec. 10 against Tampa Bay. In the second period of that game, teammate Wayne Simmonds accidentally kneed Giroux in the back of the head, attempting to jump over him.

His return to the ice is a pleasant surprise, considering as recently as Friday that the star center wasn’t able to string two “good” days together back-to-back.

“Since the initial incident against Tampa, he has felt good at times, but there’s other times, in his words, ‘I just don’t feel right,’” said general manager Paul Holmgren on Friday. “So until he feels right for a whole day and we get to the next day and he feels good another day, it is what it is. He’s not gonna be back in there.”

With the quick turnaround, it’s unclear just how soon Giroux can come back to the lineup, although first he’ll have to practice without that yellow jersey. Either way, the fact that he was able to join the team on the ice for practice after a flight to Denver is a very good sign.

In his injury update, Holmgren said that Giroux’s status remains unchanged, despite his practicing.

Sean Couturier Update

According to Holmgren, Couturier was released from Pennsylvania Hospital on Sunday. He was held for observation after taking a Kimmo Timonen slapshot to the back of the head. But, the Flyers aren’t calling it a concussion. He is day-to-day with a “head injury” and will be re-evaluated on Monday.

Roster Moves

The Flyers have recalled center Ben Holmstrom and defenseman Andreas Lilja. Lilja was in Adirondack on a conditioning trip, but did not play on Saturday after taking a puck to the hand on Friday. Holmstrom is expected to be in the lineup on Monday against the Avalanche.

Lilja remains on long-term injured reserve, so his name doesn’t come back to the 23-man roster just yet. Tom Sestito will likely be moved down to Adirondack when Holmstrom arrives in Denver, so the Flyers remain compliant with the 23-man roster which is maxed out at the moment.

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