Radko Gudas said he accepts the 10-game suspension he was handed by the NHL late Sunday, but the burly defenseman didn’t agree with the length of it.
“I was surprised. I didn’t expect that,” he said after participating in the Flyers’ practice Monday in Voorhees. “I mean, I don’t agree with it, but I accept their decision.”
Gudas, the Flyers’ most physical defenseman, received the third suspension of his career for slashing Winnipeg’s Mathieu Perreault across the back of his neck Thursday. Gudas called the incident “unfortunate” and accidental.
“I don’t think anyone in here agrees with it,” right winger Wayne Simmonds said of the suspension, “but what are you going to do? That’s the league.”
The Flyers are not expected to appeal the suspension, which will cost Gudas $408,537 in forfeited wages.
As of early Monday afternoon, the Flyers had not recalled 6-foot-7, 227-pound defenseman Samuel Morin from the Phantoms. Coach Dave Hakstol made it sound as if Mark Alt would replace Gudas.
“Altsy has done a pretty good job,” Hakstol said. “Obviously he’s a righty, and that allows Travis Sanheim to stay on the left side. I think that’s important. Sanny’s been playing really well in that spot.”
The 6-foot-4, 201-pound Alt has filled in for various injured or suspended players. In five games, he has no points and an “even” plus-minus rating.
“There’s not a lot of flash to what he’s been doing,” Hakstol said, “but he’s been giving us a real solid 12 to 14 minutes a night.”
Hakstol said Gudas needs to put in the practice time to make sure he is ready when he is eligible to return Dec. 12 against Toronto. He already has served one game of his suspension.
Defenseman Andrew MacDonald, who has missed the last 12 games after suffering a leg injury while blocking a shot, will not be ready to return Tuesday against visiting Vancouver and is doubtful for Wednesday’s game in Brooklyn against the Islanders.
The Flyers have won only three of 12 games (3-5-4) with MacDonald out of the lineup.
Winger Matt Read was put on waivers and can clear at noon Tuesday. … Michal Neuvirth, who has a 2.17 goals-against average and a .928 save percentage, is expected to get his first start in six games Tuesday. … Simmonds has not scored a goal in his last 12 games but seems to have more jump and physicality in his game recently. He said he has recovered from various injuries. “I’ve been feeling better the last little bit,” he said. “Things aren’t coming offensive for me. The only way to work yourself out of a bad streak is to continue to work hard, and hopefully they’ll eventually start going in.”