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April 15, 2016

Flyers announce Sean Couturier to miss two weeks with upper-body injury

Flyers NHL

If the Philadelphia Flyers are going to dig out of a 1-0 hole and upset the Washington Capitals in their first-round playoff series, they will have to do it without their best two-way forward:

Flyers GM Ron Hextall announced that center Sean Couturier will be out for two weeks with an upper body injury. The announcement comes after the Flyers held an optional practice today at the Verizon Center in Washington in preparation for Game Two.

Couturier left midway through the second period in Thursday’s 2-0 loss to the Capitals in Game 1. He appeared in 9:04 of ice time, 2:47 of which came on the team’s power-play, while recording one shot on goal.

Game 1 between these two teams featured a ton of massive hits, and Caps star Alex Ovechkin injured what looks like Couturier’s shoulder with a vicious (but clean) check:

For the Flyers, an already tough task becomes much more difficult without Couturier. As we wrote last night, the Flyers were 6-9-4 without their shutdown second-line center during the season. He drives possession and contributed 39 points in 63 games. Defensively, Ovechkin knocked out the player who Dave Hakstol likely would have relied on the most to contain him.

Follow Rich on Twitter: @rich_hofmann