VOORHEES, N.J. — As one forward returns from suspension, another exits with an injury.
Michael Raffl will miss 10 days to two weeks with an upper-body injury, Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said Wednesday at Skate Zone. A league source told CSNPhilly's Tim Panaccio that Raffl's injury is an abdominal pull. He suffered the injury in the second period of the Flyers' 7-4 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday and did not return.
Raffl had been playing on the top line with Claude Giroux and Wayne Simmonds while Brayden Schenn served his three-game suspension for a hit on T.J. Oshie in the Flyers' first-round series with Washington last April. With Schenn set to return Thursday night in the Flyers' home opener against the Anaheim Ducks, the Flyers will be shorthanded again.
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Now that Schenn is back, the Flyers' top line is in tact. Schenn figures to play with Giroux and Simmonds, while Travis Konecny will be with Sean Couturier and Jakub Voracek.
What hurts about the Raffl injury is now the bottom-six remains understaffed. Since Raffl is out, Schenn replaces him in the lineup. That leaves two of Nick Cousins, Roman Lyubimov and Chris VandeVelde in the lineup until Raffl is healthy enough to return.
Once Raffl returns, it's expected two of Cousins, Lyubimov and VandeVelde will exit the lineup and the Austrian will be slotted into a third-line role, which gives the Flyers more forward depth through their top-nine than they've had in the past few seasons.
In the first three games, Raffl, 27, has one goal, four shots on goal and is a plus-1.