There is a chance we never see Ryan Ellis on the ice at an NHL hockey game again. Philadelphia Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher met with the media Thursday and explained to reporters, including Charlie O’Connor of The Athletic, that there is no timetable for Ellis’ return and that it would be a “bonus” if he played at all this season. Though he can’t say now, Fletcher explained that there is a possibility Ellis’ career is threatened by this injury, which he described as “multi-layered.”
Clarity on what Ellis’ injury actually is has been hard to come by, but Fletcher indicated that it includes a torn psoas and issues with his hip and adductor muscle. He missed all but four games last season – the first four he ever played outside of the Nashville Predators organization.
Acquired for Nolan Patrick (who also may not play this season) and Philippe Myers, Ellis was supposed to reshape the Flyers defense and give Ivan Provorov or Travis Sanheim a long-term partner. The 31-year-old is signed through the 2026-27 season and carries a $6.25M cap hit, making him the second highest-paid defenseman on the Flyers roster.
It appears that contract will live on long-term injured reserve for a while.
Sean Couturier, meanwhile, hasn’t been ruled out for the entire season so far, though he is getting a second opinion Thursday morning and has not been cleared to play at this point. Fletcher called it premature to speculate about his season-long outlook or even his career, despite this being his second back injury in 12 months.