Some bad news strikes the Flyers on this Sunday evening, and it's on the injury front. Center Vincent Lecavalier, who had already missed the last three games due to what were being called back spasms, has been sent back to Philadelphia and will be out for 3-4 weeks with a non-displaced fracture in his back, per the team.
The injury apparently came late in the Flyers' game against the Nashville Predators on November 30, though it's tough to pinpoint the exact time in which it happened (especially because Lecavalier ended the game by scoring the shootout winner). Lecavalier, who had already missed seven games this season with a few different injuries, now figures to be out roughly for the rest of 2013. The Flyers play 11 more games in the month of December, so that should be a decent barometer for how much time we should expect him to miss.
This all comes at a pretty non-opportune time for the Flyers, who have averaged just two goals per game in regulation over their seven games in the last two weeks. Lecavalier is still tied for the team lead in goals scored with nine, and the team has had some trouble scoring goals in his absence -- they've scored thirteen goals in the seven games he's missed this year, and six of those came in one game.
He's done a good job bringing offense to the team, as we expected -- but unfortunately, as we also could have expected, injuries and staying on the ice have been a big problem for the veteran. In particular, this is a bit of a worrisome injury, as well -- maybe just me, but doesn't "lower back fracture" kind of scream "old person injury" to you? Hopefully he'll be ready to go and still playing well when he makes it back to the lineup in a few weeks.
Paul Holmgren reportedly will not look to add to the team's forward corps with a trade, and as a result we'll likely see a call-up soon. Brayden Schenn has been centering Wayne Simmonds and Michael Raffl in Vinny's absence, so they don't necessarily need to call up a center to take his place. Knowing that, Tye McGinn and Jason Akeson are probably the leading call-up candidates from Adirondack.