Simon Gagne

, who has made a remarkable recovery from a concussion that sidelined him for most of last season, has been one of the league's most productive players in the first two months.

Entering last night, the Flyers left-winger was second in the NHL with a plus-16 rating. Washington's Alexander Semin (plus-18) was the only player ahead of him.

The Flyers' Mike Richards was tied for 10th in the NHL with a plus-10 rating.

Road warriors

The Flyers entered last night tied with the New York Rangers for the fifth-most road points in the NHL. The Flyers are 7-3-3 on the road for 17 points.

Detroit has the best road record: 10-2-2.

Flyers honor a flyer

The Flyers will honor a Blackhawk helicopter pilot, Cmdr.

Dan Jollota

, as a "community teammate" during the second period of their game against Pittsburgh tomorrow at 1 p.m.

Jollota has been in the Army for more than 33 years. He once flew U.S. aircraft into Somalia on search-and-rescue missions. Jollota was featured in The Inquirer series "Blackhawk Down," which became a book and motion picture.

Breakaways

In regard to the Flyers' making inquiries about free-agent

Mats Sundin

, winger

Mike Knuble

said general manager

Paul Holmgren

"would be remiss if he wasn't trying to help our team get better." Ironically, Knuble is one of the players the Flyers might have to deal to free salary-cap space to sign Sundin. At this point, signing Sundin seems like a long shot. . . . The Flyers started last night with a league-high 11 shorthanded goals. . . .

Jeff Carter

began last night third in the NHL with 123 shots, behind only Washington's

Alex Ovechkin

(156) and Los Angeles'

Dustin Brown

(124). . . . Despite having knee surgery yesterday, a hobbled

Chris Therien

worked last night's radio broadcast.

- Sam Carchidi