Following a disappointing 2016-17 season, the Philadelphia Flyers entered the offseason looking to try and retool the squad into a playoff team while also attempting to get younger, shed salary, and build for the future.
And on the eve of Free Agency, the Flyers have done all of the above. Through a couple of trades, a smart draft, and a few free agency rumors, the Philadelphia Flyers look like they’re in good shape as we head into Phase 2 of the NHL offseason: the Free Agent Frenzy.
The last 5 years have not been too kind to Philadelphia 76ers fans. As the team lost pieces of its core left and right and suffered one agonizing loss after the next, team ownership tried to tell diehard fans that this losing all had a greater purpose, nicknamed “The Process” by ex-General Manager Sam Hinkie.
“The Process” was simple in practice: by tanking for many years and trading any pieces of value the Sixers had, Philadelphia would acquire copious amounts of high draft picks that would be both used on top prospects or eventually traded in an effort to get a big star and end “The Process”.
And over the past 3 years or so, the first part of this logic shined, as the Sixers got high draft pick after high draft pick. But the final part of Hinkie’s Process remained unfulfilled until last week, when the Sixers made a deal with the Boston Celtics for the first overall draft pick. With the ability to choose any player they wanted, the Sixers chose to select Markelle Fultz, a freshman point guard out of Washington.
Sixers fans, “The Process” is finally over. Welcome to the Moment.
In a bizarre, unlikely, and ironic twist of fate, the Philadelphia Flyers have been awarded the second overall pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. Despite just a 2.4% chance at nabbing the second pick, the Flyers leapfrogged teams with far better odds, such as the Colorado Avalanche, Vancouver Canucks, Arizona Coyotes, and Vegas Golden Knights.
The New Jersey Devils also saw a dramatic rise, and will choose first in the draft. The Flyers have had a history of bad luck with the NHL Draft Lottery System in the past, but their karma finally bounced there way, as the team rose 11 spots and will have a chance to acquire a game-breaking player in either Nolan Patrick or Nico Hischier.
But who’s better: Patrick or Hischier? Let’s meet the two players who will become the new faces of the Flyers-Devils rivalry.
The Flyers may have recently wrapped up their 50th Anniversary season, but the Vegas Golden Knights are just getting ready to enter their very first year as an NHL franchise. The NHL’s 31st Franchise, their team will be comprised of players from each of the NHL’s current teams.
Each team will be required to surrender one player to the Golden Knights in the Expansion Draft, but teams will be able to protect certain players. For one, players with less than two years of NHL/AHL experience will be exempt from the draft. Teams will be able to protect 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goaltender, (11 total players) or a mix of 8 skaters and 1 goalie (9 total players, but no position limits). Also, players with no-movement clauses must be protected in the draft.
So who on the Flyers gets protected, and who will be left exposed for Vegas to take a gamble on? Here’s Overtime’s preview of the Philadelphia Flyers’ Expansion Draft Plan.
The NBA Trade Deadline was just days away, and the Philadelphia 76ers wanted to trade a center. With Joel Embiid the center of the future and Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, and Richaun Holmes also on the roster, it made sense for the Sixers to trade at least one of their big men.
As we touched on back at deadline day, it seemed to make the most sense for the Sixers to either stand pat or cut their losses and trade Okafor, while re-signing Noel and letting Holmes grow as a center/power forward swingman. Of course, the Sixers did neither, dealing fan favorite Noel to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for little-known forward Justin Anderson and a conditional draft pick, which would either become a single first rounder or two second rounders.
The trade was panned by critics all over social media before even giving the Sixers a chance to show their thought process. And as time has passed, it has become clear that even if what the Sixers did wasn’t the ideal move to make, it may turn out better than some people thought.
The NHL Trade Deadline has passed, and the Philadelphia Flyers made a small flurry of moves. First, the Flyers announced they re-signed center Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and goalie Michal Neuvirth to 2-year extensions. The Flyers later traded defenseman and alternate captain Mark Streit to Tampa Bay for center Valtteri Filppula, a 4th-Round Pick and a 7th-Round Pick. For what it’s worth, Streit was later traded from the Lightning to the Pittsburgh Penguins for a 4th Round Pick.
There is a lot to break down here, so let’s get to it.
The Flyers may have worn black jerseys in last Saturday’s Stadium Series, but they may as well have been waving little white flags.
In what amounted to a highly frustrating 4-2 loss, the Flyers passed up on the chance to gain ground in the playoff picture, remaining 6 points out of the final wild card berth with no games in hand. Two teams are seated ahead of them, and few teams have as difficult a schedule as the Flyers have from here on out, a schedule heavy on road and divisional games.
With the trade deadline just two days away, is it time for the Flyers to give up on this season and move on to next year?
There is no rivalry in the NHL like that of the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Philadelphia Flyers. The two Pennsylvania teams will face off outdoors for the first time ever on Saturday at 8:00 on NBC. The rivals have only played one other time this year (the Penguins won 5-4), and the stakes have never been higher than they will be on Saturday in the Stadium Series.
Let’s take a look back at the greatest moments of the storied Flyers-Penguins rivalry.
It is often said that you can never have too much of a good thing. In practice though, even an excess of a perceived strength can ultimately lead to weakness. This philosophy seems to be occurring for the Philadelphia 76ers. While the Sixers feature three stellar centers, plus rising Richaun Holmes as a fourth option, many pundits are seemingly eager for the Sixers to give up at least one of their players in a trade.
But is trading away a fine young player the best for the Sixers’ future? It may in end up being best for the Sixers to hold on to their bigs as a sort of insurance policy for the time being, and then making a move when the time is right.
Breaking: The Philadelphia Flyers’ identity has been stolen.
While it may seem impossible to rob an organization, the on-ice Flyers are a shell of their former selves, playing without focus, drive, or passion, and the losses are beginning to pile up.
With 24 games remaining in the season and the Flyers sitting just two points out of the playoff picture, there is reason for hope. However, it is incumbent on the Flyers to figure out what has gone wrong in recent weeks, and more importantly, how they can remedy the issue and get back on track.