posted on Apr, 7 2004 @ 11:41 AM
Flyers defenseman Eric Desjardins will miss the NHL playoffs after a metal plate protecting his injured right arm broke while he was playing catch
with his son.
Desjardins returned to Philadelphia's lineup for the final three games of the regular season after breaking his right forearm Jan. 17. A plate was
inserted into his arm to strengthen it while the bone healed.
"The doctors feel the plate was already weakened beforehand," Flyers general manager Bob Clarke said Wednesday. "We knew from before there was a
possibility of this happening. The bone itself was healed, but not fully healed."
The Atlantic Division champion Flyers open a best-of-seven Eastern Conference quarterfinal against defending Stanley Cup champion New Jersey on
Thursday night. Rookie defenseman Joni Pitkanen will take Desjardins' place in the lineup.
"Obviously we don't want to lose a player of Desjardins' stature, but someone will have to step up,'' Clarke said.
Philadelphia's defense has been depleted by injuries this season. Desjardins and Vladimir Malakhov (jaw) are out, while Dennis Seidenberg could be
returning from a leg injury soon.
Desjardins originally was supposed to miss eight weeks, but his bone didn't heal as quickly as expected. He was hurt in a collision with teammate
Jeremy Roenick during a game against Toronto.
Desjardins had one goal and 11 assists in 48 games this season.