Flyers Notes

Flyers winger Jody Shelley was suspended by the NHL for two games Monday for his hit Saturday on Boston's Adam McQuaid.

Shelley, the team's enforcer, will miss Tuesday's game against visiting Pittsburgh and Wednesday's matchup in Montreal - and will forfeit $11,827.96.

"You always think it's one or two more games than what you [should] get," Shelley said after the Flyers' practice in Voorhees on Monday. "That's like any punishment, and that's what makes it punishment. They want you to feel it a bit."

Earlier in his career, Shelley was handed three fight-related suspensions - one each in 2002, 2003 and 2004.

During the second period on Saturday, Shelley was assessed a major penalty for checking McQuaid from behind and given a game misconduct.

"It wasn't intentional. . . . I had no intentions of running him into the boards," Shelley said. On Saturday, he apologized to McQuaid, who was down on the ice for several minutes but later returned to the game.

Shelley, who said he was going for the puck and not McQuaid, thought his spending "a lot of time in the penalty box" influenced the NHL's decision to suspend him.

Before Monday, Shelley was last suspended after punching Minnesota's Alex Henry in the head in 2004.

During practice, Nik Zherdev took Shelley's spot on the fourth line.

Leighton close

Goalie Michael Leighton will return to the Flyers' 23-man roster if he is cleared Tuesday by Alex Vaccaro, who performed the goalie's back surgery.

After practice Monday, Leighton said he was ready to play an NHL game. He played solidly in two rehab games with AHL Adirondack over the weekend.

In order to add Leighton to the roster, the Flyers probably will place defenseman Matt Walker back on the injured reserve list; they put winger Ian Laperriere on the long-term injured reserved list to open cap space. Walker, on a conditioning stint with the Phantoms, reinjured himself in Hartford on Sunday, general manager Paul Holmgren said. Walker had hip surgery Oct. 20.

Leighton is in a crowded goalie situation with Sergei Bobrovsky and Brian Boucher.

"I'm not sure what's going to happen," Leighton said. "Boosh and Bob are playing real well right now, so I might have to be patient to get back in the lineup. I have to work hard in practice and work my way back in."

Said Boucher: "We kind of had this situation last year, too, when we had Ray [Emery], Michael and myself. It's one of those situations where you make it work. You have to get the work in, whether it's before practice or after practice, and find a way to stay sharp."


Evgeni Malkin, who has missed the last four games with a knee injury, returned to the Penguins' practice Monday and likely will play against the Flyers on Tuesday. During practice, he replaced the injured Chris Kunitz on a line with Sidney Crosby and Pascal Dupuis. . . . Jeff Carter is third in the NHL with a 62 percent success rate on face-offs. Carter on facing the Penguins: "We've had this on the calendar for a while." . . . Former Flyer Arron Asham has four goals and eight points in 20 games with the Penguins.