Briere fined; Shelley eyes Rangers rematch


     The Flyers and New York Rangers meet three more times this year, and you don't have to be a Fred Shero descendant to realize there might be a parade to the penalty box in those games.

     On Sunday, the Rangers' Sean Avery sucker-punched Matt Carle during the Flyers' 3-2 win.

     Later in the game, Flyers enforce Jody Shelley tried to draw Avery into a fight. Avery refused.

     "But this will all iron itself out," Shelley, a former Ranger, said after Monday's practice in Voorhees.

      In other words, the three rematches _ Feb. 20 and March 6 in New York, and April 3 in Philly _ should be a little, um, entertaining. 

      The Flyers are not pals with Avery or his teammate, Brandon Prust, who took several strides before knocking Kimmo Timonen into the boards in Sunday's closing seconds. No penalty was called.

       As Prust skated back down the other end, Danny Briere and Scott Hartnell took punches at him from the Flyers’ bench.

       Both players said on Monday that the punches didn’t land. In the YouTube video below, it appears Prust's head snapped back slightly after he was hit. He adjusted his helmet afterward.

     On Monday, Briere was fined $1,000. Hartnell and Prust escaped discipline, an NHL spokesman told The Inquirer.

    Earlier this season, Briere was suspended for three games because of a head hit, causing him to forfeit nearly $238,000 in salary.

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     Defenseman Chris Pronger is getting closer to returning to the Flyers’ lineup for the first time in a little over a month.

     Pronger, sidelined since Dec. 15 with a broken right foot, went through a hard practice in Voorhees on Monday and hinted that he is almost ready to return. He will not play Tuesday against visiting Washington, general manager Paul Holmgren said, but Pronger said he will be examined by a doctor on Wednesday.

    That visit will determine whether he can return Thursday against visiting Ottawa.

    Pronger has missed the last 12 games, during which the Flyers are 8-4. Because of the team's success, Pronger said he would not rush back into the lineup.

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   For constant Flyers updates, follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter at



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