Flyers Likely Done as Fletcher Makes More Offseason ‘Bets’

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

When noon arrived on Wednesday and the free agency period opened, the Flyers made what could likely be their final additions of the offseason. 

Just minutes into the open of free agency, the Flyers had their backup netminder in Martin Jones, bought out by the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday. An hour later, the Flyers brought back a familiar face in forward Nate Thompson. In addition, the reported signing of defenseman Keith Yandle was finalized. All three deals were for one year.

That seems to be a common thread among the newcomers. Outside of acquisitions Ryan Ellis on defense and Cam Atkinson at forward, every new face on the Flyers roster is joining on a one-year deal or with one year remaining on their contract. 

It’s all part of an offseason of gambling. Just about every player the Flyers have brought in this offseason, while certainly already making an impact on the eventual culture of the locker room, can be viewed as a bet.

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Flyers Bring Back F Nate Thompson on 1-Year Deal

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

Two seasons ago, at the trade deadline, Chuck Fletcher looked to add some veteran depth to the lineup. One of those acquisitions came from the Montreal Canadiens, as Nate Thompson joined the fold.

Thompson returns to the Flyers as another free agent acquisition, signing a one-year, $800,000 deal.

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Flyers Sign G Martin Jones to 1-Year Deal

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

When the free agent market opened at noon on Wednesday, the Flyers wasted no time adding one of the remaining pieces left. They needed to get a playing partner for Carter Hart.

The Flyers have signed goalie Martin Jones to a one-year, $2 million deal.

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NHL Free Agency: Flyers Targets as Market Opens

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The free agent market officially opens at noon on Wednesday. For Chuck Fletcher and the Flyers, though, a large chunk of the offseason work has already taken place.

Fletcher admitted at his press conference on Saturday following the NHL Draft that his goal was to get ahead of free agency and the crazy bidding period that would likely follow. Instead of waiting for this time to arrive, Fletcher got creative and made four trades in the span of eight days, acquiring defensemen Ryan Ellis and Rasmus Ristolainen as well as forward Cam Atkinson, while sending defensemen Phil Myers, Shayne Gostisbehere and Robert Hagg plus forwards Jake Voracek and Nolan Patrick, as well as four draft picks, out in various deals.

The Flyers free agent work has already begun. Fletcher expressed interest in adding low-end deals at forward and defense in addition to the need to find a goaltending partner for Carter Hart. The defenseman appears to have arrived in reports of the signing of Keith Yandle on Tuesday.

As the market opens, the Flyers are still not finished yet. They will definitely be signing a goalie, likely on the opening day of free agency on Wednesday. Don’t rule out the addition of another forward as well to provide some added depth in that department.

With those things in mind, here are a few candidates at each position that the Flyers could target in free agency.

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Flyers Sign D Keith Yandle to 1-Year Deal

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

At his weekend press conference, Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher made it clear that the team put a lot of faith in younger players last season and that it contributed to the struggles. With that in mind, he made it a point to include the possibility of adding another veteran defenseman or forward in addition to a second goaltender needed on the roster.

On Tuesday, a veteran defenseman was indeed added. The Flyers have signed Keith Yandle to a one-year deal worth $900,000.

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Flyers Re-Sign D Sam Morin, Extend Qualifying Offers to Hart, Sanheim

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

After spending the better part of the last week making changes from the outside, the Flyers spent Monday taking care of some internal moves.

First, the Flyers announced that they have re-signed defenseman Sam Morin to a one-year, $750,000 deal. GM Chuck Fletcher had said just days earlier that a deal with Morin was nearing the finish line.

In addition, the Flyers extended qualifying offers to forwards Connor Bunnaman and David Kase, defenseman Travis Sanheim, and goalie Carter Hart. They did not qualify an offer to forward Pascal Laberge, meaning he will become a free agent on Wednesday.

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YWT: The Philadelphia Flyers Podcast - YWT #120 - Mood Swing

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The YWT Podcast is back and it was an extremely busy two weeks for the Flyers. It started last Saturday as Ryan Ellis was acquired by the Flyers from Nashville for Phil Myers and Nolan Patrick. Then, after Carsen Twarynski was selected by Seattle in the expansion draft, the Flyers traded Shayne Gostisbehere and two draft picks to Arizona to free up cap space. They they acquired Rasmus Ristolainen from Buffalo for Robert Hagg, their 2021 first-round pick, and a 2023 second-round pick. Finally, they closed out draft weekend trading Jake Voracek to Columbus for Cam Atkinson

Kyle Collington and Kevin Durso are here to discuss it all, going through each trade, as well as looking at GM Chuck Fletcher's comments about gaining more energy and changing the mood in the locker room. 

You can listen to this episode of the podcast below and be sure to subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Amazon Podcasts and Podbean

You can also watch the episode and subscribe to watch all episodes of the YWT Podcast on YouTube.

As always, we want you to follow the podcast on Twitter @YWTpodcast and follow Kevin Durso on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.


Fletcher: ‘We Need to Change the Mood in the Room’

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(Photo: Zack Hill/Philadelphia Flyers)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It started with a deal for Ryan Ellis a week ago, adding the much-needed top-pairing defenseman the Flyers lacked last season. Then Shayne Gostisbehere was sent to Arizona in a trade to open up cap space. That was followed by another defensive acquisition in Rasmus Ristolainen. And on Saturday, Chuck Fletcher capped off an incredibly busy week with his fourth trade, sending Jake Voracek to Columbus for Cam Atkinson.

For the better part of a decade, the Flyers have utilized the same core group and struggled to consistently put together successful seasons. After their most frustrating one to date, Fletcher knew action was necessary.

“We just can’t keep bringing the same players back year after year and expect different results. We had to make changes this year,” Fletcher said. “The players that we’ve added are all what I would call high energy, competitive people. How often have we talked about our slow starts over the past two, three years since I’ve been here and allegedly a lot longer than that? 

“We need some juice. We need some energy. We need to change the mood in the room and the energy in the room. It’s nothing against the players that we had here before. It’s about trying to create a new group, a new leadership group, new chemistry. All these guys we have acquired besides being good hockey players bring a lot of those qualities, bring a lot of experience, bring a lot of professionalism to our roster.”

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Flyers Make 6 Selections on Day 2 of NHL Draft

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

After wheeling and dealing four times over the last week, it was a relatively normal afternoon for the Flyers from a draft standpoint. They entered the day with six picks and made each of them with no more trades taking place to move draft capitals and acquire or move additional picks.

Here is the list of the six new Flyers draft picks entering the organization.

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Flyers Acquire Cam Atkinson from Columbus for Jake Voracek

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

After making a trade for Rasmus Ristolainen on Friday afternoon, Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher said he didn’t expect to make any more trades this week. What a difference 24 hours can make.

On Saturday, just prior to making their first pick in the 2021 NHL Draft, the Flyers made yet another trade, sending Jake Voracek to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for Cam Atkinson. The trade is one-for-one and no salary was retained. 

Atkinson, 32, has four years remaining on a deal with a $5.87 million AAV. Voracek’s contract had three years remaining with an $8.25 million AAV.

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2021 NHL Draft: Day 2 Targets for Flyers

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The Flyers were nothing more than bystanders during Friday night’s first round of the NHL Draft following a trade that sent the 14th overall pick – 13th selection by virtue of the forfeited 11th overall pick by Arizona – to Buffalo in the Rasmus Ristolainen trade. 

On Day 2 of the NHL Draft, the Flyers do still hold six draft picks that could produce some diamonds in the rough. An unpredictable draft and a lot of potential that could be found in middle rounds with teams getting limited to no viewings of prospects throughout the course of the season, there could be a future star waiting in a middle round.

As the second round and the resumption of the NHL Draft prepare to begin at 11 a.m., here are a few names still left on the board for the Flyers as possible targets entering Day 2.

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