The Flyers offseason just got worse and this time it is a serious medical issue.
Just days after the team announced goaltender Steve Mason suffered a broken right pinky finger, the team came out with more morbid news regarding one of their cornerstone players. The Flyers announced on Tuesday defenseman Kimmo Timonen is being treated for blood clots in his lower right leg and in both lungs.
General manager Ron Hextall said in a statement, “Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen has been diagnosed with blood clots in his lower right leg and in both lungs. Kimmo is currently being treated for this disorder back in his home country of Finland. His return to play is yet to be determined.”
This is a serious situation which far supersedes hockey. At 39 years old with a family of his own, Timonen’s responsibility is to get healthy to live a normal life. If that includes hockey at some point down the road then he will have a team in Philadelphia in which he can return. But, first and foremost, his job is to get healthy for his family.
Penguins goaltender Tomas Vokoun missed all of last season with a blood clot in his pelvis that was found during the preseason. He nearly lost his life. Vokoun said in February he was “medically cleared to do anything he needs to do.” That was six months after he underwent surgery to dissolve his blood clot but he still has not played since.
Timonen, 39, played in 77 games last season for the Flyers scoring six goals and adding 29 assists for 35 points. In seven seasons with the Flyers, Timonen scored 38 goals and dished out 232 assists for 270 points in 519 games. He remarkably appeared in 92% or more of the Flyers games in every season in Philadelphia.