By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor
On Thursday night, Chuck Fletcher eluded to the possibility of trades taking place on Day 2 of the NHL Draft. Sure enough, moments before the draft resumed, the Flyers made a trade.
The Flyers acquired the rights to defenseman Tony DeAngelo from the Carolina Hurricanes along with a 2022 seventh-round pick in exchange for a 2024 second-round pick, a 2023 third-round pick, and a 2022 fourth-round pick.
DeAngelo, 26, is a pending restricted free agent. It is reported that DeAngelo will sign a two-year extension with an AAV of $5 million.
DeAngelo has been a polarizing player in his career. In the 2019-20 season, DeAngelo had a solid season with 15 goals and 53 points in 68 games with the Rangers. Last season in Carolina, he scored 10 goals and had 51 points in 64 games.
But he’s also had off-ice issues and comes with baggage. He’s had various behavior incidents, including getting suspended for shoving an official in 2017 and most notably an incident with Alexandar Georgiev which led to the Rangers placing him on waivers at which then-GM Jeff Gorton declared DeAngelo had played “his last game as a Ranger.” He played just six games in the 2020-21 season.
The move comes with various questions. First, there is the question of DeAngelo’s reputation and the culture the Flyers are trying to build. There is also a question of how much his production will translate to the Flyers current roster.
There is also the question of the reasoning for the trade. For one, the Flyers parted ways with three draft picks to just get the rights to DeAngelo and sign him one day after passing on Alex DeBrincat. This also lends to the belief that Ryan Ellis’ health is a serious question mark for the upcoming season and that missing time to start the season seems inevitable.
This is surely the first move of more to come for the Flyers this offseason. But their first trade in an aggressive approach to the offseason is not met with universal fanfare. In fact, it’s quite the opposite for a front office that needs to make all the right moves to earn back even a sliver of trust from a doubting fanbase.