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Flyers’ goalie prospect suffers whiplash injury

Oct 19, 2012, 3:00 PM EDT

Niko Hovinen, Danny Briere

When it comes to goalies, Philly can’t catch a break.

That’s the word out of the Flyers’ ECHL affiliate in Trenton, as 24-year-old Finnish netminding prospect Niko Hovinen suffered a neck/whiplash injury in the Titans’ 3-1 win over Reading on Wednesday.

CSN Philadelphia’s Tim Panaccio reports Hovinen’s left arm and shoulder were wrapped after the game, and got word from Flyers GM Paul Holmgren that Hovinen is day-to-day and will be reevaluated this weekend.

For those unfamiliar with him, Hovinen’s an interesting character. He’s a massive physical presence (6-foot-7) that was once a promising talent, taken by Minnesota in the 5th round of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.

Then, after failing to latch on with the Wild and falling off the radar, he burst back onto the scene in 2010 with SM-liiga club Pelicans, posting two solid seasons (in 2011-12 he played in 41 games, posting a 2.26 GAA and .920 save percentage.)

Last May, he signed a three-year entry-level deal with the Flyers.

He was expected to play with AHL Adirondack during the lockout but, according to Panaccio, “looked terrible” in the Phantoms preseason opener and was sent to the ECHL.

  1. hockeyflow33 - Oct 19, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    He’s like a full foot taller than Richter. I’d kill for that size in net.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Oct 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

      Too bad his athletic ability is nowhere close to Richter. It’s safe to say this guy won’t be the next Pekka Rinne.

  2. icelovinbrotha215 - Oct 19, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    Not a good sign. Was hoping to see him make it to the NHL within the next couple of years. Still could make it but you can’t prevent an injure-prone player from getting injured.

  3. jerbear314 - Oct 19, 2012 at 9:13 PM

    I’m surprised more Flyers goalies don’t get that injury as they snap their necks around with pucks flying into the net.

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