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Big blow: Flyers expect Michal Neuvirth to miss three weeks

Michal Neuvirth,

Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Michal Neuvirth makes a save against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period of an NHL hockey game Friday, Feb. 19, 2016, in Montreal. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press via AP)


If the Philadelphia Flyers hope to force their way into the playoffs, they may need Steve Mason to carry them there.

That’s because Michal Neuvirth may very well be sidelined until the end of the regular season; the Flyers announced that they expect him to miss about three weeks with a lower-body injury.

The Flyers website provides some details:

Neuvirth was slated to start in yesterday’s game vs. Pittsburgh at the Wells Fargo Center but did not play after not feeling right. He last appeared in the Flyers’ 3-2 win over the Blackhawks at Chicago where he stopped 24 of 26 shots.

It’s likely that the organization considers Mason the clear No. 1, yet Neuvirth has often been the better goalie this season.

Neuvirth’s 17 wins matches Mason’s output despite Neuvirth playing in 12 fewer games, and their save percentage difference (.925 for Neuvirth; .915 for Mason) is substantial.

The Flyers face enough back-to-back sets to make this sting a little extra, too:

Monday: at Islanders; Tuesday: at Blue Jackets
April 2: vs. Senators; April 3: at Penguins
April 6: at Red Wings; April 7: vs. Maple Leafs
April 9: vs. Penguins; April 10: at Islanders

Perhaps a few of those crucial starts will go to Anthony Stolarz, who was recalled in Neuvirth’s absence.