WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Goalie Brian Elliott, who hasn’t played since Nov. 15 as he recovers from an apparent groin injury, could return to action during the Flyers' trip through Western Canada.
Coach Dave Hakstol didn’t rule out the possibility after the Flyers were trounced Sunday by host Winnipeg, 7-1. Elliott is on the five-game road swing.
“He’s getting closer,” said Hakstol, adding he didn’t know if Elliott would be ready during the trip. "... He’s obviously here for a reason. He’s working hard and doing everything he can do.”
In 14 games this season, Elliott is 6-7-1 with a 2.59 goals-against average and .911 save percentage. He allowed two goals or fewer in his last seven appearances.
Center Sean Couturier, who has missed the last two games with an undisclosed lower-body injury, is day-to-day and may be able to play Wednesday in Calgary.
Phil Varone made his Flyers debut, replacing Jordan Weal at right wing on the fourth line. Varone played 9 minutes, 26 seconds; took three shots; and committed a high-sticking penalty.
In the two games goalie Michal Neuvirth has started this season, including Sunday’s, the Flyers have lost by a combined 13-2. He has a 6.14 goals-against average and .719 save percentage in those two outings.
Sunday was the Flyers' fourth loss by five or more goals in their first 28 games. ... Robert Hagg got a five-minute checking-from-behind penalty and a game misconduct, causing the Flyers to play with just five defensemen for the last period. ... Hakstol changed all three defensive pairings in the first two periods, going with Radko Gudas and Hagg, Travis Sanheim and Shayne Gostisbehere, and Andrew MacDonald and Ivan Provorov. ... Jake Voracek has a five game point streak, collecting three goals and three assists in that span. ... The Flyers' power play is 0 for 13 in the last eight games.