After sitting out a game as a healthy scratch, feisty winger Tyrell Goulbourne will return to the Flyers’ lineup Thursday night against Toronto.
Eric Lindros’ No. 88 will be retired in 7 p.m. ceremonies at the Wells Fargo Center. The teams will have a pre-game skate after the ceremonies, and the puck will drop at 8:08 p.m.
Goulbourne will be on a line with center Scott Laughton and winger Jori Lehtera.
The Flyers are 3-0 in games Goulbourne has played, though he has been used sparingly.
“He’s played really well for us; he’s a young guy who brings energy and a little bit of excitement to our lineup,” coach Dave Hakstol said after Thursday’s morning skate at the Wells Fargo Center.
Goulbourne took his one-game benching in stride.
“It’s part of the job with my role and the way I play and being a young guy,” he said. “It’s going to happen, and you just have to stay focused. I have to prepare the same way for every night.”
With his speed and physicality, Goulbourne has done a good job on the forecheck in his limited playing time.
“I think the more games he plays, the more comfortable he’ll get,” Laughton said.
Young Flyers revere Lindros
The Flyers are excited about the Lindros ceremony.
“It’s going to be really cool and I think it will even be a good atmosphere for warm-ups,” Laughton said. “I think it’s exciting for all of us to see a guy we all watched growing up and see his number go up in the rafters. Just to see him around the room this morning and yesterday was pretty special for all our guys.
“It was pretty cool for me to play in Oshawa, where his number is retired, and then come here and see it go up,” said Laughton, who played junior hockey there, as did Lindros from 1989-90 to 1991-92.
Goulbourne said he “didn’t watch a ton of hockey” growing up in Edmonton. “My fondest memory of him was always picking him in the NHL (video game) when I was growing up,” he said with a smile. “That was a go-to back in the day.”
Right winger Wayne Simmonds recalled his favorite Lindros moment.
“We were playing in Toronto seven years ago, my first year in Philly, and he came out on the ice for us [at practice],” Simmonds said. “That was the first time I got a chance to meet him, so I thought that was pretty special. We had no clue [he would be there]. He just kind of showed up in the dressing room and all of a sudden he was on the ice with us at the morning skate. It was pretty awesome. He’s an awesome guy. He came to our practice rink yesterday and talked to all the boys and was here this morning. He’s been awesome to us.”
As for the game, Simmonds said “we’re going to have all the ceremonies and the Leafs are going to want to come and squash our parade. We’re going to have to play good hockey, especially after the way we played against the Rangers the other night.”
The Flyers were trounced in New York, 5-1, and their four-game winning streak was stopped.
The Rangers ended a three-game losing skid. The Leafs will be trying to do the same thing Thursday.
Michal Neuvirth will make just his 10th start of the season and is expected to face Toronto’s Frederik Andersen. … Taylor Leier, Travis Sanheim, and Dale Weise will be healthy scratches. … Lindros will become the sixth Flyer to have his number retired, joining Bobby Clarke, Bernie Parent, Bill Barber, Barry Ashbee, and Mark Howe. … Lindros was scheduled to skate with his kids at the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday afternoon. … Lindros will be reunited with his Legion of Doom linemates John LeClair and Mikael Renberg during Thursday’s ceremonies.