Nobody has a more difficult job lately than Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren. One of his many duties is giving the updated injury status of his players.
It’s a list keeps expanding and refuses to shrink.
The latest addition was the head injury suffered by Sean Couturier in Saturday’s 6-0 loss to the visiting Boston Bruins.
As most know by now, Couturier was in front of the goal screening goalie Tim Thomas when he was hit in the helmet by teammate Kimmo Timonen’s slap shot.
It occurred with 48.7 seconds left in the first period and he was out for the game.
Holmgren said Couturier was taken to Pennsylvania Hospital.
Before heading to the hospital, he was checked by the Flyers doctors
“Whatever the test they do, his scores were the same as they were in training camp,” Holmgren said after the game. “I think it’s more, what they checking for now, is just damage to the skull and obviously checking him out to see if there’s any internal damage.”
No matter how tough hockey players are, they get shaken by injuries, especially to the head.
“It is very scary getting a puck in the head,” Danny Briere said. “I talked to him a little bit between periods and he didn't feel too bad, but not all that great, either.”
That is understandable.
The Flyers keep saying all the right things about playing with those who are suiting up and not worrying about who isn’t there.
Yet the team has to feel a little snakebit.
Briere and others have suggested that they hoped that the Flyers are now getting the injuries out of the way and be as healthy as possible by the stretch run heading into the postseason.
Chris Pronger is out for the regular season and postseason with a concussion according to the team. Claude Giroux and Brayden Schenn are recovering from concussions.
Now a head injury to Couturier.
“We feel bad for those guys, but we have lots of guys in the room that can do the job and until they come back, that's the way we have to go about business,” Briere said.
Right now easier said than done, especially with one key injury after another.
Laviolette and the Flyers said the injuries are no excuse for a lackluster performance like Saturday.
That’s noble that they won’t take the easy way out, but it doesn’t make it any easier to overcome either.