The Philadelphia Flyers have announced that goaltender Carter Hart is out for the rest of the season with an MCL sprain.
Injury update: Goaltender Carter Hart will miss the remainder of the regular season with an MCL sprain in his left knee. pic.twitter.com/cfsEyfIePg
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) April 29, 2021
Carter Hart Out for Rest of Season
Hart was initially injured after the Flyers’ game against the Pittsburgh Penguins on April 15. It was thought to be minor at first, with the young goaltender slated to return in a couple of weeks. Now, though, it is clear that the injury was actually more severe.
This is an unfortunate ending for Hart’s already-rough season. His .877 save percentage and 3.67 goals-against average were some of the league’s worst numbers among goaltenders. In comparison to Hart’s .914 save percentage and 2.42 goals-against average last year, this season was a significant regression.
Hart was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in the second round, 48th overall, and has remained with the team since. Over his three-year NHL career, he has a .908 save percentage and a 2.88 goals-against average.
What This Means for the Future
Originally, Hart’s injury wasn’t cause for concern. Even now, with an extended recovery timeline, it won’t have a huge impact on the team as a whole. Currently, the Flyers are further out of the playoff race than they were when Hart was first sidelined, so there still isn’t much at stake in the remainder of the season.
For Hart himself, this long-term setback is ominous. Before his injury, Hart had been steadily improving, capping off his resurgence with a brilliant shootout victory over the Penguins. Even with a short-term injury, he risked losing the progress and confidence that he’d begun to build up. A long-term complication like this has the potential to exacerbate the problem.
On the other hand, a longer break might actually be what Hart needs right now. He looked significantly better after taking a week off to practice. Consequently, having extra time to reset mentally and physically after this disappointing season may also benefit him. This wasn’t the ending that Hart or the Flyers wanted, but hopefully, he’ll be able to come back stronger.
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