I love the overreactions on this board to minor things like this. "OMG!!! THEY SAT A 20 year old ROOKIE FOR ONE GAME OUT OF THE FIRST FIVE!!!! WTF?!?!?" Geez, relax. There's still 77 more games for him to get into, or have we all forgotten that already? Joni will get his ice time, but as people have pointed out, Hitch wants to avoid him wearing down just like Dennis Seidenberg did last season. And, as the article DrLove linked said, to keep him from getting overwhelmed. It's a pretty smart move, IMHO, and if he got a bit banged up in the Phoenix game, it's an even better move. Give him a rest, try to let Therien make a case for playing time/a trade, and then he's back in the lineup against Anaheim, fired up and looking to show why he shouldn't be benched.
In the meantime, let's try to keep some perspective, folks. #1: it's still early in the season (in fact, we are 6.1% of the way through the season, meaning we have 93.9% of the season still to go), #2: He's just 20 years old, and used to playing in shorter seasons, #3: He's going to be with the Flyers for a LONG time, and don't worry, he'll get plenty of minutes very soon.
That is pretty much what happened in the third period, Chouinard got quite a bit of ice time while Amonte and some of the veterans sat more.
Maybe this is what Hitch was talking about during the offseason. Give the young players more ice time and sit the veterans when the game is already over. Sounds like an increased role for the young players to me.
I think that had more to do with the score than playing the young players. It was kind of like garbage time in the NBA.