Sean Couturier injury shakes things up for Flyers


The one thing going right for the Flyers took a hit Saturday.

Sean Couturier missed the team's game against the Sabres with a lower-body injury and is considered day to day. The Flyers' first line of Couturier, Claude Giroux and Travis Konecny has been the only group producing consistent offense for a team that hasn't won consecutive games since Nov. 5-10.

Couturier missed a chunk of the preseason because of a knee injury he suffered during a charity game in August.

His absence is big considering all that the top-line center does for the Flyers. Not only does Couturier have 17 points (seven goals, 10 assists) in his last 15 games, but he also entered Saturday leading Flyers forwards in ice time per game (21:32) and faceoffs taken (326), while playing the club's fourth-most penalty-kill minutes (63:21).

With Couturier out, head coach Dave Hakstol was forced to shuffle his lineup significantly.

Claude Giroux shifted back to the middle and centered Travis Konecny and James van Riemsdyk, who jumped up to the first line.

Jordan Weal entered the lineup after a pair of healthy scratches but didn't play center and instead was slotted as the fourth-line right wing, while Jakub Voracek joined the second unit with Nolan Patrick and Wayne Simmonds.

The Flyers are right back at it Sunday against the Jets in Winnipeg at 3 p.m. on NBCSP+ and then play Wednesday (at Flames), Friday (at Oilers) and Saturday (at Canucks) next week.

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