Philadelphia Flyers End Keith Yandle’s NHL Ironman Record

Keith Yandle will be a healthy scratch for the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday night, ending his NHL record streak of 989 games.

Yandle, 35, broke the “iron man’s” record earlier this season, overtaking Doug Jarvis on January 25 by playing in his 965th consecutive regular game at the New York Islanders. The defender’s record began in his third NHL season, on March 26, 2009.

Arizona Coyotes forward Phil Kessel will now have the longest Iron Man streak with 968 consecutive games played, the second longest in NHL history.

Flyers interim coach Mike Yeo said it was an “organizational decision” to keep Yandle out of the squad on Saturday against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Flyers are 21-35-11 on the season, 31 points off a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

“When you make a decision like this, it’s an organizational decision. It’s made in the best interest of what’s right for the Philadelphia Flyers, going forward,” Yeo said.

Yandle has struggled this season. He has one goal and 15 assists in 67 games, playing to minus 39 while skating averaging 14 minutes, 20 seconds per game, which is his lowest average ice time since the season. His rookie award with the Phoenix Coyotes followed in 2007-08. But Yandle was still in the lineup to break the NHL iron man record, and stayed there for the next 24 games.

Now, with just 11 appearances out of 1,000 in a row played, Yandle would be a healthy scratch.

Yeo said Yandle handled the news “extremely well” despite being very disappointed with the decision.

“He took it just the way you’d expect Keith Yandle to handle it. Obviously disappointing, which you’d expect from a competitor,” Yeo said. “My only hope is that he recognizes how great he has been. For him, that is disappointing, no doubt. what he’s achieved. It’s remarkable.”

Defensive rookie Ronnie Attard is expected to slip into Yandle’s place in the third draw, as the Western Michigan University product will make his NHL debut. Yeo believes that the opportunity for young players to play is the main reason why Yandle’s series of matches ended.

“We’re at a point in the season where, as an organization, it’s important for us to bring in some young players. We have to keep an eye on the future,” he said.

Yeo said there is a chance that Yandle will return to the lineup after being scratched.

Yandle is an unrestricted free agent after this season. Philadelphia Flyers End Keith Yandle’s NHL Ironman Record

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