Holmgren: Lilja could return sooner than Dec.
The Flyers already depleted blueline took on another casualty this weekend as the club confirmed a Swedish newspaper report that Andreas Lilja had hip injury and will miss the season’s start.
What the Flyers and Lilja don’t agree on is the timeline for the 37-year-old defenseman.
Newspaper Helsingborgs Dadblad
, in a story translated by Hockeybuzz’s Bill Meltzer
, quoted the Flyers defenseman as saying he had persistent pain that did not go away last season, was diagnosed with a degenerative hip condition, and that surgery was recommended.
Lilja told the paper he might not be able to return until December – four months.
Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren doesn’t agree.
“He did have surgery [and] should be back late October or early November,” Holmgren texted CSNPhilly.com on Sunday afternoon.
Last week, the Flyers announced that Andrej Meszaros would be out indefinitely following a tear to his right Achilles tendon. Meszaros likely will miss most, if not all, of the regular season.
Sources said then that Meszaros’ realistic goal was to be healthy for the playoffs.
Given the CBA negotiations, the NHL is facing a lockout. No one knows whether there will be a season.
The only silver lining for Holmgren is that a lockout gains the Flyers some recovery time.
Right now, the defense looks like this _ our pairings and not necessarily coach Peter Laviolette’s: Kimmo Timonen-Braydon Coburn; Nick Grossmann-Erik Gustafsson; Luke Schenn-Marc-Andre Bourdon; 7th: Bruno Gervais; 8th: Brandon Manning.
Injured: Meszaros, Lilja and Chris ProngerE-mail Tim Panaccio at email@example.com