Last season – 7th in the Eastern Conference
The Flyers struggled a little bit offensively last season. Mostly among the depth forwards, but they still managed to squeeze into the playoffs, however didn’t do much damage when they were there. This season’s team is looking to get more going to have a more unpredictable lineup, because if they don’t…they will get handled the way the Capitals handled them in last year’s postseason.
GM – Ron Hextall
Hextall is going into his third season as the GM of the Flyers. Last season he managed to get the Flyers back into the playoffs again, after missing the previous season. They were still below average offensively, but managed to get in because of their defense.
Hextall’s biggest challenge is finding the right roster that produces more offensively, and the question is how long should he wait to see how it plays out?
Head Coach – Dave Hakstol
Hakstol is back for his second season in the NHL. Last season he got a fairly low scoring Flyers into the post-season for a good first season, given how mediocre they performed over the year. Pretty solid to end on a 41-27-14 record. He need to build on that this season, but there hasn’t really been a lot changes to the roster.
Dale Weise (RW), Boyd Gordon (C), T.J. Brennan (D), Andy Miele (C),
22nd overall pick 2016 (German Rubtsov, F), 36th overall pick 2016 (Pascal Laberge, F), 4th round pick 2017
Sam Gagner (C), Ryan White (RW),
18th overall pick 2016 (Logan Stanley, D), 79th overall pick 2016 (Luke Green, D), 120th overall pick 2016 (Otto Koivula, F)
There wasn’t a lot of moves with the Flyers this offseason. Re-signing Brayden Schenn, Radko Gudas and Brandon Manning from last seasons team. Outside their own contract extensions, adding Dale Weise and Boyd Gordon for Sam Gagner and Ryan White, makes this Flyers team look similar to the team they had last season. That team made the playoffs, and with a little bit of seasoning among the young defensemen, this is a competitive team.
Goaltending – 8/10
Their goalie situation is good. Neuvirth is a reliable backup and Mason has taken strides back to his old form back in the day for the Blue Jackets. Flyers haven’t been a reliable place for goaltenders the last decade, but now it’s looking promising going into this season.
Defense – 8/10
Their defense is looking good. By no means is it great, but it’s still improving. They got veteran presence, but this defense won’t be great until players like Gostisbehere and Provorov are their key guys and Del Zotto becomes one of their veterans. But, for now with Streit and MacDonald, they are good.
Del Zotto – Gudas
A. MacDonald – Gostisbehere
Provorov – M. Streit
N. Schultz – Manning
Forwards – 7/10
Offensively, having Schenn, Giroux, Simmonds and Voracek makes it a solid 1st line. They could however put up a little bit more points. Behind that it’s a bit flat. One of the things Hextall should work with is upgrading their depth offensively.
They won’t win the Stanley Cup with this roster, but they will be fairly competitive, when you keep in mind that even as a “one-line team” they made the playoffs.
Schenn – Giroux – Simmonds
Raffl – Couturier – Voracek
Cousins – Bellemare – Weise
Vandevelde – Gordon – Read
Konecny – Weal
Team Composition – 7/10
Their goalie-situation is good, their defense is one of their strengths next to the 1st line. But it still has some deficiencies. They lack more defined skill both offensively and defensively among the middle six and depth forwards. Overall it’s just not a team that scares you, it’s a poor man’s Kings.
Leadership presence – 8/10
With Streit, Giroux, Simmonds, Voracek and Mason the Flyers got a fair share of guys having been through a lot. It will help them through many rough moments, but I’m not sure this leadership group will be the one that takes them to a deep run again.
Skill Value – 7/10
Aside from the 1st line and some some core skills throughout the lineup, it doesn’t really scream a skilled team. German Rubtsov and Pascal Laberge could be some interesting prospects, but they are some years away.