In a condensed, 56-game regular season, losing any player for an extended period of time will hurt more compared to years past.

Losing a Selke Trophy winner for any time in this 2020-21 season? That would be damaging.

Sean Couturier exited Friday night's game against the Penguins during the first period with an apparent shoulder injury and did not return. The Flyers' first-line center was last on the ice around 1:38 into the action and then left the team's bench shortly thereafter.

After the Flyers' 5-2 win, head coach Alain Vigneault said Couturier was scheduled to undergo an MRI on his shoulder Saturday.

"I'll know more in the next couple of days," Vigneault said. "That's all I have as far as an update for you right now."

Couturier was shown on the NBC Sports Philadelphia broadcast pointing to an area around his right shoulder while on the bench as he looked over at Flyers director of sports medicine Jim McCrossin.

Update: Couturier out a minimum of two weeks with costochondral separation

Couturier has won back-to-back Bobby Clarke Trophies as the club's most valuable player and took home the 2019-20 Frank J. Selke Trophy as the NHL's best defensive forward.

The Flyers' alpha dog down the middle is not easily kept out of or knocked out of games. There aren't many tougher than Couturier, who in the first round of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs put up six points (four goals, two assists) over Games 5 and 6 playing on a torn MCL. Last season, as the Flyers tried to monitor his shoulder strain, Couturier somewhat sneakily still took some faceoffs. Couturier played Game 7 of their second-round exit to the Islanders with an MCL sprain.

 

Friday night was Game 2 of 56 for the Flyers, so perhaps the club was erring on the side of caution with keeping Couturier from returning. Stay tuned.

Morgan Frost, a talented center prospect, is the club's 13th forward. He would most likely enter the lineup if Couturier is to miss any time.

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