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Last-place Flyers lose wing, center for 3-6 weeks each

PHILADELPHIA -- The Philadelphia Flyers' abysmal
season took another sour turn.

The Flyers announced Tuesday that left wing Geoff Sanderson and
center Mike Richards both underwent abdominal surgery and will
be sidelined three to six weeks.

Both operations were performed by Dr. Bill Meyers at Hahnemann
University.

"I spoke with Dr. Meyers and spoke to Mike Richards a few
times," Flyers trainer Jim McCrossin said. "[Richards] is
feeling really good. [Sanderson] was still asleep ... but Dr.
Meyers said the repairs went very well. Hopefully, both will be
back within three to six weeks."

Sanderson and Richards both suffered abdominal strains in the
second period of Philadelphia's 5-3 loss to the Washington
Capitals on Saturday. Both players left the game and did not
return.

Sanderson, 34, has eight goals and nine assists in 26 games this
season. Signed to a two-year deal this past offseason,
Sanderson has 349 goals and 326 assists in 15-plus seasons with
seven different teams.

A first-round draft selection in 2003, the 21-year-old Richards
has struggled this season, recording only one goal and nine
assists in 29 games. He scored 11 goals and 23 assists last
season, his rookie campaign.

The loss of Sanderson and Richards could not come at a worse
time for the Flyers, who are just 8-17-4, the worst record in
the Eastern Conference and the second-worst mark in the league.