The Flyers’ surprise announcement on Saturday morning that rookie goaltender Carter Hart will miss the next 10 days with a lower-body injury has raised all sorts of questions.
Like, how did it happen? Hart seemed fine after Friday night’s practice at Lincoln Financial Field.
Is this the first nail in the coffin for the Flyers’ postseason hopes? After all, the kid’s brilliant play since mid-January is the main reason why the Flyers have slim playoff hopes to begin with.
And does this change general manager Chuck Fletcher’s outlook for Monday’s NHL trade deadline, if in fact the Flyers appear to be out of contention?
In lieu of the Hart news, it also was announced that Cam Talbut, acquired in last week’s trade with Edmonton for Anthony Stolarz, will serve as back-up goalie to Brian Elliott when the Flyers play the Penguins at Lincoln Financial Field.
The timing of the Hart announcement is a little strange, coming just after coach Scott Gordon revealed his decision to start Elliott in the Stadium Series game against Pittsburgh.
Did Gordon have an inkling that something was wrong with Hart when he spent the better part of five minutes on Friday night explaining to the media why he chose Elliott over what was believed to be a healthy Hart?
While Hart has slumped this past week, he clearly gives the Flyers a better chance of winning in the long haul.
If he is forced to miss four or five games (or more), you can pretty much keep your television schedule open for golf and baseball in April because the Flyers will be long shots at best to still be playing hockey.
One thing the Flyers don’t want to do is risk the kid’s health, not turn this into a long-term thing by hurrying him back, as they have done so often in the past.
Fans can only hope this is a minor setback for Hart, who figures in the Flyers’ plans for years to come.