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Ryan Ellis not expected to play for Flyers against the Oilers; Carter Hart to start in homecoming for the netminder

Ellis sat out Tuesday's practice while Hart will start in goal in his return to his home province.

Flyers goalie Carter Hart practices with the team in Edmonton on Tuesday. He'll be in goal Wednesday night.
Flyers goalie Carter Hart practices with the team in Edmonton on Tuesday. He'll be in goal Wednesday night.Read moreGiana Han

EDMONTON, Alberta — Dressed in a Flyers hoodie, gray Adidas sneakers and a backward cap, Ryan Ellis stood next to the glass watching his teammates prepare for their first away game of the season.

The first-pair defenseman did not play in the Flyers’ last game, a 4-2 loss to the Florida Panthers at home. Although he returned to practice Monday, he did not participate in all the drills because of a lower-body injury.

On Tuesday, rather than participate in a partial practice, Ellis did not step onto the ice at the downtown community arena in Rogers Place. Coach Alain Vigneault said they will see how Ellis feels, but he is not expected to play Wednesday. His status is still day to day, Vigneault said.

“This is lingering a little longer than we originally thought and planned,” Vigneault said.

“Not exactly sure if that’s exactly the same injury that he’s had [earlier in the season],” Vigneault said. “But obviously, he had something there that’s been on his mind and bothering him since the beginning, and hopefully we can get a handle on it and fix it so that he can play.”

Nick Seeler, who played when Rasmus Ristolainen was injured in the first two games and then against the Panthers when Ellis was out, traveled with the team and practiced Tuesday. Based on Monday’s practice, he will skate on the third pair alongside Keith Yandle while Justin Braun will skate in Ellis’ place with Ivan Provorov.

Ellis usually runs point on the second power-play unit. At practice Tuesday, Ristolainen and Travis Sanheim took turns replacing him.

Still skating at 78

Fifty-four years after he first donned a Flyers jersey, Joe Watson will once again take the ice for the Flyers in their “Orange & Black” alumni game.

Watson, 78, is the oldest of the 31 former Flyers who will participate. Nick Schultz, who played with the team from 2014-17, is the most recent Flyer on the roster.

The game, which will take place at the Wells Fargo Center on Nov. 15, is part of the Flyers Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Rick Tocchet and Paul Holmgren, the two inductees, will be the coaches of each team. Tickets are $35 and are on sale at

More names may be added to the roster, which includes players such as Danny Brière, Simon Gagné and John LeClair.


The Flyers play the Oilers at 10 p.m. Wednesday at Rogers Place. They arrived a day early to get used to the time change, Vigneault said. It usually takes one day per one hour of change, he added, so he expects them to be ready to go for the game. ... The Flyers held their only full practice of the trip. Vigneault said he kept it fast-paced. Wednesday, they plan to hold film study to prepare. ... Goalie Carter Hart led the post-practice stretch to celebrate his homecoming. The Edmonton native will start against the Oilers. ... Patrick Brown, who had to stay behind to finish his COVID-19 quarantine in compliance with Canada’s rules, will fly out of New Jersey at 6 a.m. Wednesday. Since he’ll miss the morning skate, he won’t play against the Oilers, but he should be ready by the Vancouver game Thursday, Vigneault said.