According to a report from NHL.com’s Bill Meltzer, Philadelphia Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds is expected to return to the team’s lineup tomorrow as the Flyers take on the rival Pittsburgh Penguins.
As Meltzer reports, Simmonds is expected to be on a line with Jordan Weal and Valteri Filppula, while Oskar Lindblom remains on a like with Nolan Patrick and Jake Voracek.
The 29-year-old Simmonds has been out of the Flyers’ lineup since suffering an upper-body injury over two weeks ago. The big power forward has 20 goals and 37 points in 59 games this season and is a big part of the reason why the Flyers have gotten themselves back into the Eastern Conference playoff picture. With Simmonds in the lineup, Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol has the luxury of rolling out three legitimate scoring lines on any given night.
Captain Claude Giroux, Sean Couturier and Travis Konecny earn top billing most evenings, but with the Patrick/Voracek and Filppula/Simmonds combinations below them in the depth chart, the Flyers are a very deep offensive team. In fact, full credit to Konecny who has filled in for Simmonds during his absence and has played remarkable alongside Giroux and Couturier. The 20 year old sophomore was 17 goals and 36 points in 65 games this season, but the majority of those points have come as a result of his increased ice time. In fact, he has 23 points in his last 27 outings.
No official word yet on whether Simmonds plays tomorrow against the Penguins, but don’t be surprised if and when big #17 makes his return.