Fully recovered from hip surgery, Brink set to resume speed game

Bobby Brink

VOORHEES, N.J. – Hockey players make their living with their legs and when one of those is seriously injured, it can compromise a career.

Fortunately for Flyers prospect Bobby Brink, the story of his surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left hip, appears to have a happy ending.

Brink, a former second-round pick (34th overall) in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, underwent the hip operation on July 26, 2022 and was out of action for five months.

When he did return on Jan. 3, he was able to play but admits he wasn’t quite a hundred percent. And it took awhile to feel like himself again.

Brink’s injury took place during a training session. The right wing, who turns 22 on Friday, had the procedure done in Minneapolis by Dr. Christopher Larson of Twin Cities Orthopedics.

When he returned, he posted 12 goals/28 points with Lehigh Valley. He was called up to the Flyers late in the season but failed to score in 10 games. However he did notch four assists.

“I wasn’t feeling great when I first got back,” Brink said on Wednesday after an afternoon session at Flyers Development Camp at the Flyers Training Center. “I mean it’s tough coming back from an injury like that.”

Brink, given the middle name “Orr” at birth by his father, is not exactly a giant, going only 5-8, 160 pounds. However, that didn’t stop him from leading the University of Denver to the 2021-22 NCAA Division I ice hockey championship. He won the national scoring title as well.

Now the Flyers have high hopes he can make a full recovery.

“I’m feeling my best now that I’ve taken some time off this summer, kind of letting everything settle down,” Brink said. “It (the recovery time) was definitely frustrating. But I knew going into it that it was going to be a long process.

“It’s tough watching the team play, have to sit in the stands and not go on road trips. . .sit back and rehab by yourself.”

Development coach Riley Armstrong noted the other day that the coaches have been working on getting Brink’s explosive first stride or two back in order. That’s a big part of his game, especially on breakouts.

“I’ve been out here since June,” Brink said. “Been doing a lot of mobility work and strength training. Now I feel like I can do ranges of motion and be much more powerful. I’m feeling pretty good.”

Without the luxury of a training camp, Brink was thrown right back into action in January. It wasn’t easy playing catch-up.

“You’re right in the middle of a season, everyone was in mid-season form,” Brink said. “We were playing a lot of games and there wasn’t a lot of time to stay in the gym.

“This summer is big for me and I’m taking advantage of the time I didn’t have laar aummwe.”

 

>Attard, Mete sign contracts

 

On Wednesday, the Flyers signed defenseman Ronnie Attard to a two-year, two-way/one-way $1.7-million contract and defenseman Victor Mete to a one-year, two-way contract worth $775,000.

Attard, 24, registered 32 points in 68 games with the Phantoms last season. He was a third-round pick of the Flyers in 2019.

Mete, 25, split last season between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the AHL Toronto Marlies. He posted two points in 11 games with the Leafs. For his career: 5 goals/45 points in 247 NHL career games.

 

>Like father, like son

 

Cole Knuble, son of former Flyer forward Mike Knuble, was taken by the Flyers in the fourth round (103rd overall) of last week’s NHL Draft in Nashville.

The younger Knuble spent some years growing up in Philadelphia and so returning here brings back pleasant memories.

“This is where I learned to play hockey,” he said. “It (wearing a Flyer jersey at development camp) was a big honor.”

Mike Knuble was happy his son was drafted by a team he once played for.

“He was super happy,” said, Cole, who posted 66 points for Fargo (USHL) last season. “He would be happy anywhere but especially since it was the Flyers, he was even more excited. He loved his time here. He knows how good of an organization it is.”

Cole, a 5-11, 184-pound center from East Grand Rapids, Michigan, was passed over in the 2022 draft, possibly because scouts didn’t think his skating was up to NHL caliber. That’s something he’s worked on and why he was selected fairly high up this year.

“That was an issue I had to address,” he admitted. “I started skating with a skating coach back home in Grand Rapids. I think that helped a ton. I had a full-time strength coach last year, so I was able to work on speed workouts.

“It was just a constant progression I felt.”

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About Wayne Fish 2409 Articles
Wayne Fish has been covering the Flyers since 1976, a stint which includes 18 Stanley Cup Finals, four Winter Olympics and numerous other international events.