Flyers captain Chris Pronger will not play in the Winter Classic this season.

He won't play at all in the playoffs this season.

That's because Pronger has been diagnosed with severe post-concussion syndrome.  The last Flyer to be diagnosed with severe post-concussion syndrome was Keith Primeau, also a Flyers captain.

“After consultation with respected concussion specialists Dr. Joseph Maroon and Dr. Micky Collins, explained GM Paul Holmgren, it is the opinion of both doctors that Chris is suffering from severe post concussion syndrome. It is the recommendation of Doctors Maroon and Collins that Chris not return to play for the Philadelphia Flyers for the remainder of the 2011-12 season or playoffs.  Chris will continue to receive treatment and therapy with the hope that he can get better.”

Losing Pronger is a huge loss for the orange and black who have won seven straight and currently hold the top spot in the east with 43 points.  The Flyers should be able to fil-in for their captain, their defense has been a bright spot all season, and depth is something that have there.

"The news is not what we wanted," admitted Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette.

The Flyers will be able to make a move to replace Pronger, by placing him on the long-term injured reserve list, but really is there another player in the league like Chris Pronger?  The move to the LTIR gives the Flyers some cap space and it will be interesting to see if Holmgren can work some magic.

The Flyers are 12-4-1 without Pronger this season and 8-3-2 with him in the line-up

The Flyers should have defenseman Andreas Lilja back soon along with Erik Gustafsson to help soften the blow of losing Pronger but they surely won't have the same impact as Pronger has in the back end.

The bigger question is like Primeau, will Pronger ever be able to play hockey again?

Keep in mind, he is signed with the Flyers for five more seasons and now his career could be in jeopardy.  Pronger is premier playoffs performer and it will be an enormous task for the Flyers to replace both in the short-term and long-tern if he is unable to  play again.