The Philadelphia Flyers came off a great win on Wednesday night with some bad news. Prior to the game, general manager Paul Holmgren announced that rightwing Matt Read was injured with a confirmed concussion, and on Thursday, it was announced that Zac Rinaldo would sit out for six weeks with an ankle sprain.
One of the resident tough-guys on the team, Rinaldo had a pretty decent showing in the Flyers’ victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday. He was so close to a Gordie Howe hat trick, as he scored a rare goal during the game and also dropped the gloves. His influence on the game even earned him a spot on the three stars of the game list.
Rinaldo is not well known for his offensive ability, but he does have a mean hit and riles up the team when they need it. To see a rare goal from Rinaldo is always something that Flyers fans like to see, especially since Thursday’s game marked their 10th straight home game win and goalie Steve Mason‘s ninth win on home ice. So, to come back from that with Read injured and to hear that Rinaldo will be out of the lineup for the next couple of weeks was not a good omen.
Rinaldo’s absence will probably not affect the team quite as much as Read’s absence, at least in terms of offensive prowess. Although Rinaldo is not racking up points like Claude Giroux or Michael Raffl, he is one of only nine players that have played in all 44 games this season. His presence on the ice is definitely a mental one that his teammates will surely miss.