Friday's game was the third that Briere has missed this season. He didn't play in consecutive games, Oct. 29 against Carolina and Nov. 2 against Buffalo, due to an upper-body injury. The Flyers won both games.
Matt Read, whose value is heightened by his ability to play multiple positions, replaced Briere as the second-line center between James van Riemsdyk and Wayne Simmonds.
"He plays every position for us," Flyers coach Peter Laviolette said about Read before Friday's game. "He plays defense, on the power play, plays left wing, right wing, center. . . . Now, with Danny out, he jumps back in the middle, and it should be seamless for him."
Other injury updates
Holmgren updated the status of two other injured players, Brayden Schenn (concussion) and Sean Couturier (head injury). Both are listed as day to day.
"Brayden skated and did his off-ice conditioning [Friday] and has made good strides," Holmgren said. "Sean skated [Friday] and did his off-ice conditioning."
On Wednesday, Flyers defenseman Andreas Lilja returned after missing the previous 10 games with a high-ankle sprain. Lilja played 15 minutes, 9 seconds in the win over the Stars.
"I felt good getting back there," Lilja said following Friday's morning skate at Madison Square Garden.
His return coincided with that of Claude Giroux, who had a goal and three assists after missing the previous four games with a concussion.
"He got overshadowed by Claude coming back and throwing four points," Laviolette said of Lilja. "He was really aggressive, really strong and solid, and I was impressed with the way he came back."
Even though Friday's game with the Rangers was the third of a five-game road trip, the Flyers get to return home and will have Saturday and Sunday off for the holiday.
The team will resume practice on Monday in preparation for Tuesday's game at the Tampa Bay Lightning.
- Marc Narducci