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NHL Prospect Report: Philadelphia Flyers

Philadelphia Flyers

From now until the start of next season, I’ll be looking at each NHL team’s prospect situation and assessing each prospect’s projected fantasy value. Today, we’ll be taking a look at the Flyers. With all due respect to turnover leagues, I will be focusing solely on keeper and dynasty leagues, because prospects have minimal value in re-draft leagues. Most fantasy leagues vary in structure, so for the purpose of this exercise, I will be referring to leagues that include a main roster and a prospect roster, each with their own respective draft. Last week, we got a week of recess. 

This week we move up to the 19th-placed Philadelphia Flyers.

2016-17 Recap

Unfortunately, it was a year of frustration for Flyers fans. The rumors abounded as well as injuries, but in the end, Philadelphia missed the playoffs. They brought in Brian Elliott and have kept things intact. There is some promise for the current roster, but prospects are needed.

The Flyers got rid of Steve Mason. As a result, it is the Elliott-Neuvirth show. However, the 5-on-5 and defense are still concerns. A prospect or two may need to make that jump. One will be Nolan Patrick.

Now to present the prospects.

1. Nolan Patrick, C

Age: 19  H/W: 6’2″/198 pounds.

Drafted: Round 1, Pick 2 in 2017 by Philadelphia

2016-17 Team: Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)

33 GP, 20 G, 26 A, 46 Pts, +9, 36 PIM

Patrick was great to watch for Brandon last season when he was healthy. He is a young forward that arguably could have gone first overall. As a result, the Flyers got their power center. Patrick is hard to drive off the puck and has a real nose for the net. His physicality gives him a versatility the Flyers could use. Furthermore, the forward can play well in all three zones. That is sorely lacking at times in Philadelphia.

He will start off in the NHL. Nolan sees the ice well and keeps NHL defenders honest. That is rare to possess. The pivot has first-line potential in the NHL and could be a boost to the Flyers in all phases. Even better is the fact that he can play the penalty kill, as the Flyers are one of the higher penalized teams in the league. It will come down to health for Patrick. If he can get over the past year, he will be an excellent player in this league and for fantasy.

2. Travis Sanheim, D

Age: 21  H/W: 6’4″/ 202 pounds.

Drafted: Round 1, Pick 17 in 2014 by Philadelphia

2016-17 Team: Lehigh Valley Phantoms (AHL)

76 GP, 10 G, 27 A, 37 Pts, +7, 46 PIM.

[the_ad id=”384″]Sanheim is a playmaker in the AHL. What would happen in Philadelphia? That is the question. The Calgary Hitmen saw him be a point-per-game player. So, which is it? Was last year a fluke? Do the points return when he starts playing in the NHL? 0.5 points per game is not bad.

The key will be for Sanheim to keep playing more assertively. His lower body is strong, and so is the upper body. The Flyers prospect wins battles in the corners with ease. If he can play well on special teams, he is another player Philadelphia can use. No one is saying the Flyers will call him up right away, but do not rule it out. A 21-year-old who already shows NHL vision is hard to keep down in development. Again, Sanheim just has to work on some little fundamentals.

3. Samuel Morin, D

Age: 22  H/W: 6’6″/ 228 pounds.

Drafted: Round 1, Pick 11 in 2013 by Winnipeg

2016-17 Team: Lehigh Valley Phantoms (AHL)

74 GP, 3 G, 13 A, 16 PTS, 129 PIMS, EVEN

[the_ad_group id=”2221″]Morin is the prototypical defenseman with a little offensive upside. He is developing too slowly to some. However, when one looks at how he has filled out, the numbers tell a different story. Some Flyers brass believe that Morin is ready right now and has been slotted into the NHL lineup.

As he continues gaining more experience, the Flyers defenseman may score a few more goals. Morin has been working on his shot. It may seem that there is a chance for improvement. That is good, at least. The defenseman has a tendency to get caught flat-footed on the outside. This cannot happen in today’s NHL too often.

4. Philippe Myers, D

Age: 20   H/W: 6’5″/ 210 pounds.

Drafted: Undrafted

2016-17 Team: Rouyn-Noranda Huskies (QMJHL)

34 GP, 10 G, 25 A, 35 PTS, 46 PIM, +21

Myers has enjoyed a solid progression and the luxury of not being rushed in the Flyers system. The prospect will play in their AHL affiliate (Lehigh Valley) for the 2017-18 season. He is expected to have an impact. That is hard to believe given that he was signed out of juniors just two years ago.

The defender’s best opportunity is more development over the next couple seasons. Myers must execute better at the next level. Again, his season in Rouyn has to lead to more steps forward. His shot serves him well. The Flyers could have themselves a good depth player with some offensive upside in the future. His development as far as fundamentals will be vital.

5. German Rubtsov, C

Age: 19  H/W: 6’0″/ 188 pounds.

Drafted: Round 1, Pick 22 in 2016 by Philadelphia

2016-17 Team: Chicoutimi Saugeneens

16 GP, 9 G, 13 A, 22 PTS, 4 PIM, +11 — split time with several teams overseas.

Rubtsov plays the game with a little of everything. This gets the young forward into trouble sometimes, but he makes more positive than negative. Understand that the player was in Russia and then North America briefly last season.

That will be the key to the Flyers’ future development. Rubtsov has to be given room to grow, as he is a bit of a project (2-3 years, maybe). However, expect him to be in Philadelphia in two. Once the forward figures it out, then look out. The Russian forward is not afraid to go into traffic, so it would not take much. He just needs time, as his versatility reminds some of a Russian Claude Lemieux (just smaller).

Prospect Grade: B

Philadelphia’s prospect situation is good, though they lack depth and have a hole in the net. There are first-round prospects that will take time, but potential can be seen. Development is so vital for a team that has back-end weakness. It may take a trade to get that long-term goalie again.

That does it for this week’s prospect report, but be sure to come back next week when we look at the Tampa Bay Lightning. As always, feedback is appreciated, and I’d love to hear what changes you would all make to this list. Leave your thoughts in the comment section! Thanks for reading, and keep your stick on the ice! Please note that next week starts the regular season. After the Islanders prospect report, a new fantasy column will appear in this slot.


All statistics taken from:

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