With the Stanley Cup Remaining over and a brand new champion topped, Philadelphia Flyers normal supervisor Chuck Fletcher’s first offseason is now formally in full swing. Fletcher may have a full plate this summer season attempting to re-shape the roster right into a contending staff and step one in that course of might be how he navigates the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.
With a brand new regime on the town, and presumably a brand new organizational philosophy geared towards successful proper now, the draft course of may have regarded drastically totally different in comparison with how Ron Hextall and co. ran the ship. Fletcher and assistant normal supervisor Brent Flahr determined to provide a sneak preview into how issues could also be totally different at this 12 months’s draft, how negotiations with newly acquired, unrestricted free agent (UFA) heart Kevin Hayes are going, potential buyouts, and extra.
Draft Philosophy Stays Standing Quo
Though there have been main modifications on the high of the organizational chain, the scouting division for the Flyers is basically intact, which appears to be a very good signal. Drafting was arguably the best power that Hextall’s tenure dropped at the desk, persistently discovering high quality gamers within the first spherical and beyondwho are already making main impacts on the NHL degree or might be within the close to future.
Philadelphia Flyers normal manger Chuck Fletcher started the offseason with a press convention to handle the state of the staff, and the upcoming NHL entry draft. (Jose F. Morena/The Philadelphia Inquirer through AP)
The Flyers have persistently focused one explicit trait in all of their prospects during the last half-decade or so, hockey sense and IQ. Not like the Flyers of previous who focused dimension and grit, the staff has been prepared to draft gamers of all sizes and styles as long as they show an affinity for the psychological side of the sport. Fletcher and co. appear to worth the identical traits of their prospect analysis.
I’ve been very, very impressed with the novice scouting workers. It’s a powerful group, plenty of expertise, I believe all of us acknowledge the way in which the sport goes. For me, hockey sense has at all times been a vital a part of what you search for in a hockey participant. You clearly need the largest, quickest, most ability participant you may get. However the gamers with these intangibles, with the hockey sense, and the drive and work ethic are extraordinarily necessary, and I believe that has been a precedence right here by the years.Chuck Fletcher Press Convention, June 10, 2019.
The most important query concerning their first choose within the draft is whether or not they are going to really make the choice or the commerce the choose for instant assist. Fletcher didn’t rule out the potential for buying and selling the 11th-overall choose however is comfy preserving it if nothing main materializes.
If we hold our picks and keep at 11, we’re nonetheless going to get a extremely good participant. It’s a fairly good chip. In sure eventualities, I might not hesitate to maneuver it if it may actually assist our staff.Chuck Fletcher
No Motion on Kevin Hayes Entrance
When the Flyers moved a fifth-round choose for the rights to UFA heart Kevin Hayes, there was by no means a assure that he would signal with the staff. The deal was struck to provide them the very best likelihood at getting it achieved.
Flyers are working exhausting to hammer out a take care of heart Kevin Hayes earlier than he formally hits free company. (Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports activities)
With a couple of further weeks to barter, present him the services, and set up a working relationship, the percentages of getting pen to paper could be larger than in the event that they waited for the authorized tampering interval, the place dozens of different groups could be wooing him.
He’s acquainted with our coach and our coach is acquainted with him. So, we simply thought it made sense to attempt to get forward of it. There are not any guarantees it’s going to work out, however actually, we felt if we had an additional couple weeks to talk to him and current our case, it will be higher than simply possibly having a few days on the finish of the month. We really feel this offers us the perfect likelihood of touchdown him and once more, there are not any ensures. It could work, it might not work, however actually a threat we’re taking.Chuck Fletcher
It was a threat, however a threat price taking contemplating the staff nonetheless owns 9 picks on this 12 months’s draft, and a prospect pool already stocked with unimaginable depth. Locking up Hayes will fill the Flyers largest want, with Hayes dealing with second-line heart duties Nolan Patrick can develop in simpler minutes within the third-line heart position whereas additionally giving the staff the roster flexibility to maintain captain Claude Giroux on the wing.
Associated: Buying and selling Trouba to Flyers Makes Most Sense
The Flyers have till June 23 to signal Hayes earlier than the interview interval begins and different groups can start to barter with him. Don’t be shocked nevertheless if Hayes decides to attend till July 1 to signal, even when he in the end finally ends up with the Flyers. It is sensible for him and his camp to see all of his choices earlier than making a choice.
Flyers’ RFAs Nonetheless Unsigned
After Hayes, the Flyers largest precedence so far as signings might be taking good care of their very own restricted free brokers (RFAs). Ivan Provorov, Travis Konecny, Travis Sanheim, Ryan Hartman, Scott Laughton, and Justin Bailey are all looking for new offers. Fletcher’s largest problem might be how he navigates a mix of bridge and long-term offers. If Fletcher feels he can lock these guys up earlier than their primes for a discount he’ll. However, he may push for bridge offers that might afford the membership extra monetary leeway right here and now, however then run the chance of getting out-priced if all three of them take massive leaps and earn extra profitable contracts as soon as their bridge offers expire.
If we are able to get the precise deal, we’re completely satisfied to go long run as a result of we consider all of these gamers might be nice gamers for us. I’m actually not against doing shorter time period. I’ve achieved each by the previous. Some gamers prefer to go brief and be capable of bounce again available in the market in a few years and different gamers like that safety. If the worth is correct, we’ll do both.Chuck Fletcher
His decisions, in addition to the gamers, will determine how a lot accessible cap area he’ll be capable of use on the UFA market, the place he’ll certainly look to make extra upgrades particularly if Hayes doesn’t get signed.
Buyout Candidate: Andrew MacDonald
At his press convention, Fletcher left the door open on the potential for a buyout. At first look, the Flyers roster had one prime candidate to be purchased out, veteran defenseman Andrew MacDonald. Ought to the Flyers want a couple of further million in cap area he was the probably option to go.
Per GM Chuck Fletcher: The #Flyers have positioned defenseman Andrew MacDonald on unconditional waivers for the aim of terminating his contract.— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) June 15, 2019Lo and behold with the primary buyout interval opening on June 15, MacDonald was positioned on unconditional waivers for the aim of terminating his contract. Shopping for out the maligned blueliner will save the Flyers roughly $three.83 million in cap area this season. For a staff that wishes to spend to the cap, that’s a very good chunk of change that can be utilized both to enhance the bottom-six ahead group or to provide the staff the flexibleness to make an enormous free agent signing like Erik Karlsson.