Flyers' Boulerice returns after serving 25-game suspension

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Flyers forward Jesse Boulerice played his first NHL game Monday night -- and then got into a fight on his first shift -- since serving a 25-game suspension for hitting a player across the face with his stick in October.

Boulerice faced Buffalo after being called up Sunday from Philadelphia's AHL affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms. He had two goals and three assists and 65 penalty minutes in 30 games with the Phantoms.

Boulerice's suspension matched the longest in NHL history after he cross-checked Canucks forward Ryan Kesler during Philadelphia's 8-2 win at Vancouver on Oct. 10.

The Flyers, who had lost 10 straight before beating the Sabres 4-3 in a shootout, are banged-up after Mike Richards, the team's leading scorer this season, tore his left hamstring in a 2-1 overtime loss to Florida on Saturday. Philadelphia was also minus star forward Simon Gagne (concussion), forward Joffrey Lupul (sprained ankle) and defenseman Derian Hatcher (knee).

Forward Steve Downie also returned Monday after missing four games with a concussion.