Matt Walker, the Flyers' hard-luck defenseman, will undergo surgery Thursday to repair his left hip, general manager Paul Holmgren said before Tuesday's game.
Walker, 30, had surgery on the other hip Oct. 20. Holmgren said the latest injury could have occurred "back a while." He wasn't sure whether it happened during Walker's weekend conditioning stint with the AHL's Adirondack Phantoms.
Acquired in a trade that sent Simon Gagne to Tampa Bay on July 19, Walker has not played for the Flyers this season.
Walker went on the injured-reserve list, opening a roster spot for goalie Michael Leighton. The defenseman will be sidelined four to six weeks, Holmgren said.
On Monday, the Flyers placed Ian Laperriere (post-concussion syndrome) on the long-term injured list to free salary-cap space for Leighton to rejoin the team. When players are on the long-term list, their salary-cap hits do not count.
Holmgren said he does not expect Laperriere to play again this season.
Recovering from back surgery, Leighton was visiting with a doctor during Tuesday's game against Pittsburgh. He was expected to be activated after the game, Holmgren said.
Winger Dan Carcillo is turning into a "swing" player, someone who is used on two types of lines.
When he's playing on Mike Richards' line, he is counted on to provide offense. When he's on the fourth line, the Flyers depend on him more for his checking.
Either way, he provides noticeable energy with his hell-bent style.
"It doesn't bother me," he said, referring to his different roles. "I try to pride myself on being a complete player, and if that calls for me to do different things on different nights with different guys, [so be it]. We have a great lineup, and it doesn't really change the way I play."
Heading into the game, the Flyers were 12-2-2 with Carcillo in the lineup and 7-5-3 without him.
"I don't know," he said, smiling. "I guess it is what it is."
Carcillo said he had extra incentive facing Pittsburgh because it was the team that selected him in the third round of the 2003 draft.
During the 12-game winning streak they took into Tuesday, the Penguins had the lead for 489 minutes, 14 seconds and trailed for just 28:53.
Staying with the hot goalie, coach Peter Laviolette gave Brian Boucher his third consecutive start on Tuesday. Look for Sergei Bobrovsky to get the nod Wednesday in Montreal. . . . Entering Tuesday, the Flyers had outscored their opponents, 39-19, in the second period this season. . . . Laviolette scrambled his lines early in Tuesday's game. . . . Wednesday's 7:30 p.m. game in Montreal will be televised on the Comcast Network and broadcast on WPHT-AM (1210).
- Sam Carchidi