NEWARK, N.J. - Rookie center Sean Couturier made a quick recovery and was back in the Flyers' lineup Sunday night for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Devils in New Jersey.

Couturier, 19, who has been a defensive specialist in the playoffs, suffered a leg injury in the first period of Thursday's 4-3 overtime loss and did not return the rest of the night. He took part in Sunday's morning skate and said he was "ready to go."

Without Couturier hounding him, New Jersey's Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and two assists in Game 3.

Couturier centered a line with Max Talbot and Erik Wellwood Sunday night.

Lines shuffled

Peter Laviolette, trying to find the right combinations to get his offense untracked, continued to juggle his lines Sunday night.

The Flyers coach started with Claude Giroux centering Brayden Schenn and Jaromir Jagr. But he quickly altered that group.

Shortly thereafter, Jagr was with Schenn and Matt Read, and Giroux was with James van Riemsdyk and Talbot. Later, Laviolette seemed to be settling into a van Riemsdyk-Giroux-Wayne Simmonds unit, along with a line that had Danny Briere centering Scott Hartnell and Voracek.

Voracek was on three different lines in the first 71/2 minutes.

Entering the night, Simmonds, Jagr, Giroux, and Hartnell had combined for one goal in the series. Hartnell ended his drought by scoring on a power play with 8 minutes, 10 seconds left in the first period, tipping in Giroux's shot.

Less than two minutes later, Giroux scored a shorthanded goal. But the Devils rebounded, and the score was tied, 2-2, at the end of the first period.

Breakaways

Flyers defenseman Andrej Meszaros participated in the morning skate but was scratched. Meszaros, who had back surgery on March 21, is getting closer to returning. . . . Devils goalie Marty Brodeur turned 40 on Sunday. Before the game, he had been 1-2 when playing on his birthday. Brodeur told Devils reporters he hopes to play beyond this season. . . . Tim Sestito - whose brother, Tom, plays for the Flyers - replaced the ill Ryan Carter in the Devils' lineup. . . . Zac Rinaldo was a healthy scratch for the Flyers. . . . The Flyers are 7-19 in series in which they lose two of the first three games. . . . Game 4 will be played Tuesday at the Wells Fargo Center at 7:30 p.m. . . . The Flyers are 3-2 in home playoff games this year, while New Jersey is 3-3 on the road.

Contact Sam Carchidi at scarchidi@phillynews.com,

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