"You look for a blessing in disguise," Hartnell said. "Hell be rested and ready to go come playoff time."
There's no timetable for a return for the Flyers' winger, who blocked a shot from the point by Islanders defenseman Milan Jurcina in the first period of Thursday's game. But it isn't unrealistic to think he could be out the rest of the regular season.
The timing of the injury is unfortunate for van Riemsdyk, who who was playing in just his sixth game since returning from a concussion that had sidelined him since Jan. 12. He skated directly to the bench after blocking the shot, and then attempted to return to the ice for another shift before heading down the tunnel into the Flyers' locker room.
"All losses are big because guys, we count on them to fill a bunch of different roles on our team," coach Peter Laviolette said. "Its been a tough go for him. Hes just coming back from being out of the lineup for quite an extended period of time. He gets back and starts skating, plays a few games and now another setback for him."
Said Kimmo Timonen, "He made a nice play. Sometimes you block a shot and it hurts, and it was bad luck, it hit the bad spot. But its part of the game. Too bad we lose him a couple weeks, but hes going to be back."
The Flyers tweeted the news about van Riemsdyk shortly after the second period commenced, and JVR wasn't on the bench.
No one was more complimentary of van Riemsdyk's blocked shot than goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov.
"It is amazing," Bryzgalov said. "When you can see the guys like James van Riemsdyk and Brayden Schenn sacrifice themselves and just put themselves in front of a 100-mile-an hour rubber puck. They just don't let the puck go to the goalie. It is amazing. It gives a boost to the team. It says, 'hey like this guy battles and we have to battle too.'"
Orthopedic surgeon Dr. Steve Raikin will evaluate van Riemsdyk further on Friday, according to general manager Paul Holmgren.
Its been an inconsistent year for the Flyers 22-year-old winger. In 42 games this season, he has 11 goals and 13 assists.