Flyers put veterans Dowd, Fitzpatrick on NHL waivers Thursday

PHILADELPHIA – The Philadelphia Flyers placed both centre Jim Dowd and defenceman Rory Fitzpatrick on NHL waivers Thursday.

“At the end of the day, we felt it would give us more roster flexibility if they both clear,” Flyers GM Paul Holmgren told the Philadelphia Inquirer from the world junior tournament in the Czech Republic.

“It will allow us to do more things with our team, maybe even bring up a defenceman.”

Dowd, 39, had sat out seven of the last 10 games. He had two goals and a minus-5 rating in 30 games this season while making US$500,000 on a one-year deal.

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“Jimmy Dowd’s been a great guy to have around,” Holmgren told the Inquirer. “At some point, if we can bring some of our younger players up and play them more if they’re playing better, then this becomes a positive step for the organization. We can’t stop progress. We have to move forward.”

Fitzpatick, who turns 33 next week, had one assist and a minus-12 rating in 19 games this season while earning $550,000 on a one-year deal.