Flyers Notes: Flyers juggle lines in Giroux's absence

Posted: May 10, 2012

Claude Giroux's one-game suspension caused Flyers coach Peter Laviolette to tinker with his lines, a common occurrence in this Turnpike Series with the New Jersey Devils.

With his team facing elimination Tuesday, Laviolette started the night with four different lines from the ones that he primarily used Sunday.

The first-period lines: Matt Read centering Scott Hartnell and Jaromir Jagr; Danny Briere centering Brayden Schenn and Jakub Voracek; Eric Wellwood centering James van Riemsdyk and Wayne Simmonds; and Sean Couturier centering Max Talbot and Zac Rinaldo.

Couturier played only a little over seven minutes in Game 4 on Sunday because he was still bothered by a leg injury. After Tuesday's morning skate, he said he felt "much better," and Laviolette figured to give him more playing time.

Rinaldo played his first game in this series and had five hits in the opening period.

Meszaros returns

Defenseman Andrej Meszaros returned to the lineup for the first time since March 1. He missed nearly seven weeks because of a back injury that required surgery March 21.

Meszaros was paired with rookie Erik Gustfasson, and Andreas Lilja became a healthy scratch.

The Flyers were hoping Meszaros would help them get out of their zone more quickly than they had in the previous three games.

Bad apples

The former teams of Simmonds (Kings) and Ilya Bryzgalov (Coyotes) are in the Western Conference finals.

Kidded Simmonds: "I guess me and Bryz were bad apples there. They got rid of us."

Breakaways

Briere took Giroux's spot on the team's first power-play unit. The Flyers had no shots on their first power play of the night. . . . Surprisingly, a half-hour before the game the Flyers' public-relations staff tweeted that some tickets were available.

Entering the night, teams that scored first were 1-9 in the Flyers' 10 playoff games this year. . . . The Flyers began the night with a 1-14 record in series in which they trailed three games to one. . . . Giroux nervously paced in the press box after the Devils took a 2-1 first-period lead.


Contact Sam Carchidi @ scarchidi@phillynews.com,

or on Twitter @BroadStBull.

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