Monday, March 14, 2011

Flyers lose Pronger for the rest of the regular season

Just a few days removed from Paul Holmgren telling us not to worry about Chris Pronger's injury, the Flyers dropped this news on us today: Pronger will have surgery on his right hand and will miss 3-4 weeks, which covers the rest of the regular season. Fortunately, Pronger should be fine to return in the playoffs and, if anything, he will be plenty refreshed for a long playoff run.

While many Flyers fans thought to panic initially, it's important to remember that Pronger has already missed time this season and the team did pretty well without him. Of course the Flyers would prefer to have their defensive anchor on the ice as they try to hold on to the number one seed in the East but they have plenty of defensive depth, with the newly acquired Nick Boynton stepping in to play on a regular basis. Jumping into the 7th defenseman spot will be Erik Gustafsson, who was called up from the Phantoms. You may remember Gustafsson from his one game stint back in February.

The loss of Pronger does somewhat diminish the Flyers chances at getting the top seed in the East but it should have no affect on how far they get in the playoffs this season. As we have seen time and time again, seeding in hockey means very little, with tops seeds getting knocked off on a regular basis. The Flyers are going to be too busy worrying about turning around their play on the ice to worry about not having Pronger. Perhaps not having him out there will even help the team play good hockey again as they step their game up to replace their best defensive player.

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