The Philadelphia Flyers have one of the best prospect pools in the NHL. Whether they are in juniors or in the AHL, Philadelphia will be a team to be reckoned with years to come. For now, they are going to have to go through some growing pains and the Flyers play in a very tough Metropolitan Division.
10. Robert Hagg, defenseman: Robert is 22 years old and might make an appearance at the NHL level this season. He scored 7 goals and recorded 8 assists in 58 games last season with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (AHL). His plus/minus was 10. In five-playoff games, he recorded one assist. Hagg is also a good skater and defender.
9. Samuel Morin, defenseman: Morin is also another valuable blue line prospect for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was drafted #11th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft and at some point, General Manager Ron Hextall expects him to blossom. In 74 games last season with Lehigh Valley (AHL), he scored 3 goals and recorded 13 assists. His plus/minus was 0. That means he is very well on the ice when his team scores and when his team is scored on. Morin recorded two assists in five-playoff games last year.
8. Alex Lyon, goalie: At 24 years old, Alex Lyon needs to crack the Philadelphia roster within the next season or so because if he doesn’t, Lyon will either be a career minor league goalie or will be with another team. Lyon has potential if he reaches the NHL level. His record last season with Lehigh Valley was 27-14 with a .912 save percentage and a 2.74 GAA, along with four shutouts.
7. German Rubtsov, center: Rubtsov was taken 22nd overall in the 2016 NHL Draft. He could one day provide depth at the center position for the Flyers. In 15 games with Russkie Vityazi Chekhov (MHL), Rubtsov scored 7 goals and recorded 8 assists, and his plus/minus was 2. In 16 games with Chicoutimi Saguene’ens , he recorded 9 goals and recorded 13 assists, and his plus/minus was 11.
6. Mike Vecchione, center/forward: At 24 years old, Vecchione hopes to make a serious impact with the Flyers either this season or next. The Flyers like his versatility on the offensive side of the puck. He can play the center and wing position effectively. In 38 games with Union College last season, he scored 29 goals and recorded 34 assists. Vecchione’s plus/minus was 19.
5. Carter Hart, goalie: Carter Hart is only 19 years old and he could possibly have the highest upside out of the goalies that are currently in their system. Hart won the WHL best goalie this past season with the Everett Silvertips. His record was 32-11-2 with a .927 save percentage and a 1.99 GAA, along with nine shutouts.
4. Travis Sanheim, defense: Sanheim is expected to crack the Flyers lineup in the 2017-2018 season. He will probably be on the third pairing of defense with Radko Gudas. Sanheim was drafted #17 overall in the 2014 NHL Draft. He scored 10 goals and recorded 27 assists in 76 games with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (AHL) last season. His plus/minus was 7. In five-playoff games, Sanheim recorded three assists. He could maybe quarterback the second line power play as well one day.
3. Nolan Patrick, center: Nolan Patrick was taken with the second overall pick in this past summer’s draft. The concern with Patrick is his injury history. If he can perform on the ice at a high level, Patrick will be a scoring tank. In the 2016-2017 campaign with the Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL), Patrick scored 20 goals and recorded 26 assists in 33 games. His plus/minus was 9. In the previous season with the Wheat Kings, Patrick scored 41 goals and recorded 61 assists in 72 games. His plus/minus was 51. In 21-playoff games that season, he scored 13 goals and recorded 17 assists. Patrick led them to the WHL title.
2. Anthony Stolarz, goalie: Stolarz showed some potential last season with the Flyers in a short amount of time. I think at some point in the 2017-2018 season, the Flyers will get frustrated with Michal Neuvirth and Brian Elliott, and they will make him the starter. In seven games with Philadelphia last season, his record was 2-1-1 with a .928 save percentage and a 2.07 GAA, along with one shutout. He also backed up a lot of games last season as with the Flyers. That caused Stolarz to only appear in 29 games in the AHL. His record was 18-9 with a .911 save percentage and 2.92 GAA. along with one shutout.
1. Oskar Lindblom, forward: Lindblom was just recently signed to an entry-level contract. At 21 years old and also being a fifth round draft pick in the 2014 NHL Draft, Lindblom is ready to blossom. He played in 52 games last season with Brynas IF Gavle of the SweHL. Lindblom scored 22 goals and recorded 25 assists. His plus/minus was 16. In 20-playoff games, he scored 4 goals and recorded 10 assists. I think Lindblom will play most of the 2017-2018 at the AHL level but once he reaches Philadelphia, it will be tough to remove him from the lineup.