Thanks for joining us for our August 31-in-31 series! Every day this month we will be taking a look at each team and diving into their prospect depth charts, risers and fallers, graduating prospects, and top ten prospects in the system.
As our series 31 in 31 series progresses, we examine the Philadelphia Flyers. The Flyers continue to ebb and flow between being in and out of the postseason with the 2018-2019 campaign being a down year. Overall, the prospect crop for the team has to be among the more promising in the league. While it may not be a murderer’s row of NHL stars in the making, there is certainly a lot of good available in their cupboard with the number of smart, theoretically sound draft picks made in recent years.
I would be remiss to not mention Carter Hart. He was off to a flying start, no pun intended, and even after some regression he continued to prove that be belonged. Flyers have reason to be excited that they have not had in quite some time as the team has struggled to find steady goaltending for several years. He won’t be surprising any teams this year as they will know what to expect, even so Carter Hart has a legitimate chance to take a step forward this year. With Neuvirth being left to pursue other options and Elliot only being re-signed to a one-year pact, it is safe to assume the Flyers like what they saw in him and expect him to build on his revelation in Flyers goaltending in 2019-2020.
Travis Sanheim turned in a terrific rookie showing as well. He truly made the most of a trying situation with the Flyers’ defense leaving much to be desired elsewhere. As such, it would be surprising if he doesn’t move on to full-time NHL work with the marked improvement he has made from two seasons ago. On a lesser note, Oskar Lindblom will also be moving on to full-time NHL duty having completed his rookie season as well. He looked gun shy if not lost at times on offense. He has skills in the way of jump starting the team offense, how well they stand out consistently at the NHL level remains to be seen.
Also leading the way for graduating Flyers prospects are Joel Farabee and Morgan Frost. Both stand to be legitimate contenders for spots on the opening night roster. While Frost is further along and more promising, Farabee has a slight edge in making the team right out of training camp given he is a more natural winger and that is where there are vacancies in the rotation. Farabee’s signing his entry-level contract was sooner than expected in that he is still undersized for conventional professional hockey. More on both of them, later.
Speaking of proving they are athletically ready, Issac Ratcliffe will be looking to do much the same thing as he is also moving on from the OHL to professional hockey. He is not far from making it to the big leagues. If he wants to stay in the NHL full-time, his skating could use work as his ability to create for himself and his teammates can only take Ratcliffe so far with limited mobility.