Saturday, September 5, 2015

Briere ready to return?

(UPDATED at 1:25 p.m.)

Briere ready to return?

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(UPDATED at 1:25 p.m.)

The Flyers are hoping veteran center Danny Briere, who has missed the last six games because of a concussion, can return to the lineup Tuesday against the visiting New York Islanders.

They can use him. Their offense has been listless in the first period lately, and a healthy Briere might give them a jump-start.

The Flyers will have a meeting at their Voorhees practice facility Monday at 11 a.m., and there is no word on if they will skate. Briere, however, figures to skate either way. He said last week he was “close” to returning and he started to take contact in practices.

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After participating in an optional practice Monday in Voorhees, Briere said he was feeling better each day and there was a possibility he would be back against the Isles. It depends on how he feels when he wakes up in the morning and finds out if he has any aftereffects from Monday's contact.

* * *

Rangers fans started a sing-song chant in the third period Sunday: “You can’t beat us!”

They’re right. After Sunday’s 5-2 loss in Madison Square Garden, the Flyers are 0-4 against the Rangers this season and have been outscored, 14-6.

The Flyers will get another crack at the Blueshirts on Saturday at the WFC.

* * *

Give rookie Tom Sestito credit for trying to spark the Flyers. The 6-foot-5, 230-pound winger had three fights (by our estimate, he won two of them) in Sunday’s loss. It was the first time a Flyer was involved in three fights in a game since 2009, when Ian Laperriere dropped the gloves three times in a 4-1 loss to Florida.

“It’s a big rivalry, and I think we needed an edge,” Sestito said.

The league is looking into accusations that Sestito pulled Brandon Prust’s hair during their third-period fight. The replays were inconclusive.

BTW, there was no retaliation on the Rangers’ Mike Rupp for mocking future Hall of Famer Jaromir Jagr with a salute after scoring a Winter Classic goal last month.

With a straight face, Rupp claimed he was just excited about scoring in the Winter Classic and that he wasn’t making fun of Jagr.

In Sunday’s game, Rupp played just 4:41.

* * *

Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov was having a terrific game Sunday until he allowed a brutal wraparound goal  to Marian Gaborik, giving the Rangers a 2-1 lead with 5.1 seconds left in the second period.

Bryz said the puck took a "funny bounce" off his stick and that it was like  "somebody sucking the puck with a vacuum behind the net."

* * *

After meeting the Islanders Tuesday, the Flyers host Toronto on Thursday _ and the Luke Schenn trade rumors figure to intensify. The Maple Leafs’ defenseman is the brother of Flyers center Brayden Schenn.

* * *

Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter@BroadStBull.

Inquirer Staff Writer
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