The Flyers rolled the dice unnecessarily by playing Ilya Bryzgalov on Monday against Tampa Bay _ and they might be better served by resting the veteran goalie for the next several games as he recovers from a chip fracture in his right foot.
Bryzgalov, the NHL’s best goalie this month, was in pain Monday after he blocked teammate Jakub Voracek’s shot during pregame warm-ups. X-rays were negative, and the Flyers surprisingly allowed him to play.
GM Paul Holmgren said Bryzgalov wanted to play and doctors said he couldn’t do any more damage.
Still, with the playoffs around the corner, why take the risk?
After the game, Bryzgalov was limping around the locker room and in obvious pain. He had another set of X-rays, which were again negative.
The pain persisted, and on Tuesday an MRI _ a more extensive test _ showed the fracture.
Holmgren said Bryzgalov_ who has started 19 of the last 20 games _ will not practice on Wednesday and would not make the trip to Toronto for Thursday’s game. He said he hopes Bryzgalov can practice Friday and play this weekend.
What’s the rush?
Let him miss weekend games against Ottawa (Saturday) and Pittsburgh (Sunday), and make sure he’s at 100 percent before returning.
The Flyers have very little chance of finishing first in the East _ they are seven points behind the Rangers with six games left _ and getting healthy for the playoffs should be the first priority.
The Flyers, seeded fifth, are four points behind fourth-seeded Pittsburgh. Yes, they would like to surpass the Penguins _ whom they play two more times _ and get home-ice advantage in the opening playoff round.
But the Flyers have a better record on the road than at home, so is it THAT important to risk using Bryzgalov to try to gain home ice?
Give me your take.
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Xfinity Live! Went on a tour of xfinity Live! _ located on the old Spectrum grounds _ on Tuesday. Very cool place, with themed bars/eateries. The Victory Beer Hall, which features long tables that resemble an old German tavern, is among the many great places.
Another cool item: The old newspaper clippings hanging on the walls that recreate some of the Flyers' magical wins. The sideboards that were used at the Spectrum rink, along with the hardwood from 76ers games played there, are also incorporated into the dining/entertainment complex.
Xfinity Live! opens Friday, and it will undoubtedly be a big hit.
Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter @BroadStBull.