For the first time this season, winger R.J. Umberger will be a healthy scratch when the Flyers host the Dallas Stars on Tuesday.
Umberger, acquired in the off-season with a fourth-round 2015 draft pick in the deal that sent Scott Hartnell to Columbus, has nine goals and is goal-less in his last 18 games, a career worst. He had a 17-game goal-less streak earlier in the season.
"I can't say my game's (been) too well, and I don't have too many feet to stand on right now and disagree," Umberger said in a somber tone. "It's disappointing that at this time of the year, it's not there."
Vinny Lecavalier, who is goal-less in a career-worst 21 games and had been scratched in seven of the previous nine contests, will replace Umberger.
Umberger called it "the hardest year of my career, and it's had a bunch of low points for different reasons. I've been fighting all year trying to figure it out, and it hasn't really come to me."
Umberger, 32, who supposedly has been battling an undisclosed injury, admitted that the fact he was traded for a fan favorite, Hartnell, has put extra pressure on him.
"I'd lie if I said it didn't," he said. "I know what type of guy Hartnell was in the locker room and all these guys enjoyed having him here and the success he's had, and he's done pretty well in Columbus. So, yeah, when things aren't going well, there's added pressure and you feel that."
The trade for Umberger was the first made by new general manager Ron Hextall.
"I think the biggest thing that's bothered me is just that I feel like I've let Ron Hextall down," Umberger said. "He believed in me, bringing me here, and I feel I haven't been the player he needs."
Overall, Umberger has nine goals, 15 points and is minus-9.
Hartnell has 16 goals, 43 points, and is minus-12.
After this season, Hartnell has four years left on his contract, while Umberger has two years remaining.
Flyers sign center. The Flyers signed undrafted 5-foot-8, 162-pound center Danick Martel to a three-year entry-level contract beginning with the start of the 2015-16 season.
Martel, 20, is in his fourth and final season with the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He is second in the league in scoring with 102 points (48 goals, 54 assists) in 63 games.
In 195 career games with the Armada, Martel has 99 goals and 104 assists for 203 points, along with 177 penalty minutes.
Breakaways. After missing four games with head and shoulder injuries, defenseman Nick Grossmann will return to the lineup….Claude Giroux, looking for his first even-strength home goal of the season, has nine points (three goals, six assists) in eight career games against Dallas. Giroux needs 14 points to pass Pelle Eklund for 15th on the Flyers' all-time list…..Jake Voracek is tied for fifth in the NHL with 66 points…..Wayne Simmonds is third in the NHL with 13 power-play goals….The Flyers have allowed the first goal in the last four games and six of the last seven.
Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter @BroadStBull.