Posts Tagged ‘philadelphia flyers’

Philadelphia Flyers founder Ed Snider will be immortalized in the form of a nine-foot bronze statue outside of the Wells Fargo Center, the team announced Thursday.

Snider founded the Flyers in 1967 and owned the franchise until his death in 2016. He witnessed Stanley Cup victories in 1974 and 1975.

The statue will be revealed Oct. 19 prior to a game against the Nashville Predators – on the 50th anniversary of the Flyers’ first-ever game.

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This year’s second overall selection, Nolan Patrick, has cracked the Philadelphia Flyers opening night roster, according to general manager Ron Hextall.

The news doesn’t come as too much of a surprise given Patrick entered this year’s draft as the No. 1 rated prospect by NHL Central Scouting. Nevertheless, the 19-year-old had a fairly underwhelming preseason offensively, wherein he tallied just three assists in six games, with his biggest highlight coming when he dropped the gloves with Boston Bruins forward David Krejci.

Patrick is primed to be an important cog for the Flyers moving forward and is expected to slot down the middle on Philly’s second or third line.

With the preseason now in the rear-view mirror, Patrick and his teammates will head to San Jose where they will open the regular season against the Sharks – and for Patrick – his first career regular season contest.

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Despite missing the playoffs in three of the last five seasons, the Philadelphia Flyers are not in rebuild mode – if you ask general manager Ron Hextall, anyway.

Yes, the Flyers did pick with the second overall selection in this year’s draft, but that was mostly due to a stroke of good luck, as the Flyers were a competitive team that finished only seven points short of the final Eastern Conference playoff spot. A result that Hextall feels is a strong indication of the direction his club is going.

“You’re not rebuilding when you’re competitive,” Hextall said, according to Sam Carchidi of Philly.com. “A rebuild, to me, is when you go to the bottom and you pick high, high, high – and essentially, you’re not trying that hard to win. That’s not in our DNA. We want to win. We want to win as many games as possible.”

“We’re not going to go to the bottom of the league and pick first overall for four or five years. That’s no way to build culture. Our vision was to stay competitive, and build, and get younger – and that’s exactly what we’re doing.”

Landing Nolan Patrick with the second overall pick obviously goes a long way to ensuring that vision come to fruition, but, Hextall realizes that at the end of the day, execution on the ice is all that matters.

“I can sit here and tell you 85 points, 105 points, but it really doesn’t mean anything,” said Hextall. “What’s (important) is when our team starts the season and we go do it. Do we expect to make the playoffs? Of course we expect to make the playoffs.”

” … I’m comfortable saying we expect to make the playoffs because our team on paper is good enough to make the playoffs.”

The Flyers drop the puck on their 2017-18 season Oct. 4 in San Jose.

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No Philadelphia Flyer will wear No. 88 ever again.

The Flyers will retire Eric Lindros’ jersey on Jan. 18, 2018 prior to a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, the team announced Monday.

One of the most physically dominant players in NHL history, Lindros tallied 659 points in 486 career games with the Flyers, winning the Hart Trophy in the 1994-95 season, and carrying the team all the way to the 1997 Stanley Cup Final. The Big E was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame as part of the 2016 class.

The jersey retirement may seem like a long time coming, but the organization historically waits until a player is inducted into the Hall of Fame before retiring his jersey, according to Dave Isaac of the Courier-Post.

Lindros, of course, was touched by the decision.

“I am deeply humbled and honored that the Flyers are going to retire my jersey,” said Lindros. “I am so thankful to the entire organization for this incredible recognition. I look forward to sharing this moment with my family, friends, teammates, and of course Flyers fans, who mean so much to me.”

Lindros will join exclusive company as only the sixth Flyer to have his jersey retired. His No. 88 will join the numbers of Bernie Parent, Mark Howe, Barry Ashebee, Bill Barber, and Bobby Clarke in the Wells Fargo Center rafters.

“Eric has made an incredible and lasting impact on the Flyers organization, our fans, and the game of hockey as a whole,” Flyers President Paul Holmgren said. “We could not be more proud to raise his number 88 to the rafters. We look forward to what is anticipated to be a historic night for the Flyers.”

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Veteran netminder Brian Elliott agreed to terms with the Philadelphia Flyers on a two-year contract, the team announced Saturday.

The deal carries a $2.75-million annual cap hit, reports Stephen Whyno of The Associated Press.

Elliott arrives in Philadelphia after spending one season with the Calgary Flames, in which he posted a 26-18-3 record with a .910 save percentage.

The 32-year-old made his NHL debut with the Ottawa Senators in 2007.

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Brayden Schenn didn’t see it coming.

The forward says he was caught off guard when he found out he’d been traded by the Philadelphia Flyers to the St. Louis Blues on Friday night during the first round of the NHL draft.

“I was shocked,” Schenn told Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer on Sunday. “I wasn’t really paying attention to picks 10 to 20, and then I got a text from my agent saying St. Louis was involved (in talks with the Flyers), but really nothing was imminent.”

Less than a minute later, general manager Ron Hextall called him to let him know he’d been dealt.

“And, boom, it happened,” Schenn said. “I just talked to (Hextall) quickly.”

The Flyers traded the 25-year-old for forward Jori Lehtera, the 27th overall pick (which they used to nab Morgan Frost), and a conditional first-rounder in 2018.

Schenn hit the 25-goal mark in each of the last two seasons, notching 26 in 2015-16, and Philadelphia will certainly miss his offensive contributions, considering only Wayne Simmonds scored more than Schenn did for the Flyers this past season.

Schenn could get a chance to move back to his natural position with his new club.

“They told me they’ll give me an opportunity at center, so I’m excited,” he said. “They have a lot of skilled forwards there, obviously, in (Vladimir) Tarasenko, (Jaden) Schwartz and (Alex) Steen. The list goes on and on. They obviously have a great team and I’m looking forward to it. It’s a great opportunity. I’ve been looking forward to playing center for the past little while, and if I get a chance to do that in St. Louis, I’m going to take it and run with it.”

Schenn had nothing but praise for the Flyers organization and the city of Philadelphia, but he’s looking forward to playing for the Blues.

“I have mixed emotions,” he said. “I spent six years in Philly and had an awesome time there. Great teammates and a great organization. But I’m excited to go to St. Louis and get a great opportunity.”

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Ron Hextall doesn’t want to use the R-word.

The Philadelphia Flyers general manager admitted to the Courier-Post’s Dave Isaac on Saturday that his club is “methodically getting younger,” but refused to classify it as rebuilding.

“Yeah, we’re getting younger. A rebuild, absolutely not,” Hextall said from the NHL Draft in Chicago.

After taking Nolan Patrick second overall Friday night, the Flyers traded 25-goal scorer Brayden Schenn to the St. Louis Blues for Jori Lehtera and a pair of picks, using the 2017 selection on center Morgan Frost at No. 27.

The Flyers had the 11th-youngest roster in the league this past season at 27.006 years of age, according to NHL Numbers, and they’ll once again be complementing their veteran core with a bit of a youth movement next season.

“We have young players,” Hextall said Saturday. “At some point here we have to open up opportunity. We’ll let them play when we feel they’re ready to play. Unlike what people think about our philosophy, we do not want to hold players back. When they’re ready to take that next step we’ll allow them to take that next step. In saying that, we feel like we’ve got some young players who, if they’re not ready they’re close.”

Travis Konecny showed flashes of skill in his rookie season, and the 2017-18 Flyers will also likely feature 23-year-old college free-agent signing Michael Vecchione as well as 19-year-old defenseman Ivan Provorov and 23-year-old blue-liner Shayne Gostisbehere.

The biggest concern for Philadelphia, though, will be compensating for the loss of Schenn’s offense. Patrick should be able to contribute relatively soon, but head coach Dave Hakstol said the top prospect’s teammates might have to raise their games, too.

“It’s a lot (to make up), but I think that’s where some of it has to come from,” Hakstol said. “Some of the quality minutes that Brayden Schenn has been in, not necessarily all, some of those minutes could go to young players. Not only a couple guys that may be new to the roster this year but a guy like Travis Konecny, guys like that that can benefit from more minutes in more situations.”

Call it a rebuild, a refresh, or whatever R-word is more applicable, but only Wayne Simmonds scored more goals for Philadelphia than Schenn did in 2016-17, so the Flyers are going to need to match that lost production somehow.