The Flyers will be down another forward on Tuesday night against the Minnesota Wild, as tenacious winger Zac Rinaldo has been officially labeled day-to-day with an upper-body injury according to general manager Paul Holmgren.
The injury is the second in as many days for the Flyers, who lost forward James van Riemsdyk to a concussion on Sunday.
Rinaldo, sitting second in the NHL in penalty minutes with 122, was hit in the face with a puck during Monday’s afternoon practice. Originally stated to be a game-time decision, the Flyers iced Rinaldo, who will be replaced by enforcer Jody Shelley on the team’s fourth line.
Rinaldo has a goal and four assists in 35 games. Shelley has an assist in 14 games
WELLS FARGO CENTER — The Boston Bruins walked into the Wells Fargo Center on Saturday afternoon and punched the Flyers right in the mouth.
“That’s for thinking you’re the best team in the Eastern Conference.”
Before the red-hot but injury-plagued Flyers could blink, their seven-game winning streak was gone. The reigning Stanley Cup champions had the contest in the bag less than three minutes into the game with goals from Benoit Pouliot and Daniel Paille.
The big, bad Bruins continued the beating throughout, easily winning, 6-0, and taking their seat atop the conference where they belong.
“We have to regroup,” said Kimmo Timonen. “Obviously, we weren’t happy the way we played. We can’t be happy the way we played today, I thought it was an ol’ fashioned ass kicking in every area of the game. They were better in every aspect of the game.”
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Well, that didn’t take long.
Painted into the salary cap corner thanks to the eye-opening play of Matt Read and Sean Couturier and the five-game stays-on-the-cap suspension of enforcer Jody Shelley, the Flyers and general manager Paul Holmgren are in a roster jam.
Ratcheted up against the cap wall the Flyers were playing with fire to begin with, even without injuries or suspensions to start the preseason. And even before the season starts with the high salary of Brayden Schenn, the injury to Andreas Nodl and the weighing suspension to Shelley, they are paying for their financial decisions.
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Looking to bust out of a four-game slump with pure force, the Flyers will activate both Jody Shelley and Dan Carcillo for tonight’s contest against the visiting Edmonton Oilers at the Wells Fargo Center.
Forwards Nik Zherdev and Andreas Nodl will be the healthy scratches.
The Flyers officially announced on Wednesday that forward Jody Shelley has received a two-game suspension for his punch to Vancouver Canucks defenseman Andrew Alberts on Tuesday.
With just over seven minutes left to play in the game with Vancouver easily leading 6-1, Shelley and Alberts came together after a whistle. With bodies between them, Shelley dropped his gloves and quickly came over the top with a sucker punch to the face of Alberts, which caused the former Flyer to hit the ground immediately.
The Philly enforcer received a game misconduct and match penalty, which is automatically reviewed by the league.
But what makes this ruling by the NHL’s disciplinary office curious, is that an extremely similar play happened to Boston Bruins’ leading goal scorer Milan Lucic on Dec. 23, when, wrapped up by the referee, slugged the face of Freddie Meyer, earning him the same match penalty as Shelley. However, Lucic was simply fined with no suspension.
According to general manager Paul Holmgren, Flyers forward Jody Shelley has been suspended two games for his hit on Boston Bruins’ Adam McQuaid, in Saturday’s 2-1 Philly victory. Shelley will miss Tuesday’s home contest against the Pittsburgh Penguins, as well as Wednesday in Montreal versus the Canadiens.
Nikolay Zherdev is expected to be re-activated in his place, with Dan Carcillo taking up fourth-line duties.
Shelley, 34, was racing down an icing touch up, when he pushed on the back of McQuaid, who lost an edge and went into the boards head first. Shelley received a five-minute major and game misconduct. After being helped off, McQuaid returned and finished the game.
The NHL has strict rules regarding contact on a touch icing and Shelley’s offense was textbook.
Shelley, acquired by the Flyers as a free agent in the offseason, has one goal, two assists and 73 penalty minutes in 31 games.
When the Flyers acquired big-bodied forward Jody Shelley, on July 1 for $1.1 million a year for three years, fans shrieked in confusion. Why? They asked. Why would general manager Paul Holmgren pay that much for an enforcer that will only play a shift or two, take a penalty and ride the bench?
The answer is simple — Holmgren sees 6’3, 225 lbs. Shelley as a player, not just an enforcer.
“We feel we got a guy who can play a role for our team we haven’t had in quite some time and play a third or fourth line,” Holmgren told the media after the signing. “He’s a bigger body, so I’m very happy.”