|Meszaros could be out until the calendar flips to 2013. (US Presswire)|
The Philadelphia Flyers are already hurting with a shallow defensive corps, so the news they released on Tuesday was anything but welcome.
Defenseman Andrej Meszaros is going to be out for an undetermined amount of time after he underwent surgery to repair a torn right Achilles tendon. The surgery was successful and was performed on Tuesday morning according to GM Paul Holmgren.
More from Paul Holmgren: "Andrej was injured last week during summer training in Slovakia. Andrej will be out indefinitely."— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) August 7, 2012
You know it's bad when players are getting injured in offseason training. You can feel pretty safe in saying the blue line is snake bitten.
I'm no doctor or anything so I went to WebMD to see what kind of timetable the Flyers could be looking at. Let's just say they might now be hoping for a delay to start the season.
After either type of surgery, you will likely wear a cast, walking boot, or similar device for 6 to 12 weeks. Many health professionals recommend starting movement and weight-bearing exercises early, before the cast or boot comes off. Your total recovery time will probably be as long as 6 months.
Naturally that's on the cautious side, preparing for the worst, but the point is we aren't looking at a quick fix or anything. Athletes don't just hop back into action after tearing an Achilles.
This is likely to set off a bit of panic on Broad Street. The Flyers were already worried about defense as Chris Pronger is still out and seems certain to never play again and they lost Matt Carle to the Lightning in free agency this summer. They did their best to fill the hole on the blue line by signing Shea Weber to a massive offer sheet but the Predators matched. So now instead of picking up another defenseman, they are losing one, at least for a little while.
Holmgren and staff had to already be considering making a move to get a defenseman, this is only going to increase the urgency. The free-agent market certainly isn't filled with difference-makers at this point but there are some guys left who can fill a hole and not be a total liability, guys like Michal Rozsival and Carlo Colaiacovo, among others.
Meszaros has been a reliable defenseman for the Flyers. Last season the 26-year-old average just over 20 minutes on ice per game and also chipped in with seven goals and 18 assists in offensive production over his 62 games.