Sizing Up the Flyers Third-Line Winger Competition

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

With training camp about to get underway, the competition for roster spots will start heating up from the start. It’s no secret where the biggest opening is.

The Flyers still have a need for a third-line winger. It’s too early to even know who else will be part of that line, though it is assumed that Nolan Patrick will be the center and a winger like James van Riemsdyk or Oskar Lindblom could line up on the left side.

With the opening being one of the focal points of camp, let’s break down the competition.

The third-line winger competition can really be broken into three categories: prospects vying for the spot, players already with the team that could move up, and veteran newcomers added in the offseason.

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Flyers Training Camp Preview: 5 Things to Watch

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The official start of training camp is here and that means competition for roster spots, the start of a new era under a new head coach and many familiar faces returning to the ice. 

Training camp is where a lot of the skills and improvements are shown on the ice in preparation for the start of the season. It’s where chemistry gets fully developed, where systems get instilled and where gameplans are put together ahead of the games that count.

This camp is an especially important one for the Flyers. It seemed that everything that could go wrong last season did, so the team is looking to put that into the rear view mirror, make a return to the playoffs and go for their first playoff series win since 2012.

As training camp begins bright and early on Friday and continues into the weekend with three on-ice sessions each day, here are five things to watch during training camp.

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Both Sides Win in Flyers Deal with Provorov

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It took the entire offseason, but Ivan Provorov and the Flyers finally reached a deal in the evening hours on the night before training camp opens. Hey, deadlines spur action.

The deal -- a six-year, $40.5 million deal with an average annual value of $6.75 million -- is more than just the completion of a deal in time for Provorov to report for training camp on Friday morning. It is a win for both sides -- for Chuck Fletcher and the Flyers and for Provorov as well.

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Flyers-Islanders: Rookie Game Observations

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The Flyers opened up a 3-0 lead on the Islanders in the Rookie Game at PPL Center on Wednesday before the Islanders clawed their way back, closing the gap to 3-2 and then erasing a 4-2 deficit early in the third. They claimed the game in a shootout, 5-4.

For many of these players, this was their first real competition on the ice in a long time, and for several of them, this was a step up in competition, facing professional players.

Let’s take a look at five observations from Wednesday’s game.

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Flyers Fall to Islanders in Shootout in Rookie Game

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It started off well for the Flyers rookies, but as the game wore on, the team simply lost steam. The Islanders rookies were able to turn a 3-0 deficit and 4-2 deficit after two periods into a 4-4 game early in the third.

The Flyers had their chances in overtime. Joel Farabee hit his second post of the game and missed the net on a breakaway moments later. In a shootout, Oliver Wahlstrom scored the only goal to lift the Islanders over the Flyers, 5-4, in the Rookie Game at PPL Center in Allentown on Wednesday night.

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Flyers-Islanders: Rookie Game Preview

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

After three days on the ice honing skills and working on drills, it’s time for the Flyers rookies to take the ice for a game.

The conclusion of Rookie Camp is upon us, as the Flyers prospects will take on the Islanders prospects in a game on Wednesday night at PPL Center in Allentown at 7 p.m.

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With Days Remaining Until Camp, Will Provorov, Konecny Contracts Get Resolved?

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The countdown is on for the Flyers when it comes to restricted free agents Ivan Provorov and Travis Konecny. Just three days remain before the team takes the ice for training camp. Most of the team has already arrived ahead of the start and held informal skating sessions and even a scrimmage on Monday.

Provorov and Konecny would be two notable absences from camp if new contracts aren’t signed by Friday.

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Potential of Frost, Farabee, Ratcliffe on Full Display at Flyers Rookie Camp

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Photo: Kate Frese

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

At Flyers Rookie Camp, it's become the orange line. The three players wearing orange jerseys at the first two days of Rookie Camp all figure to be a part of the Flyers future, maybe someday soon. After all, in a week they will be competing for a spot on the Flyers roster.

The trio of forwards are first-round picks Morgan Frost and Joel Farabee and second-round pick Isaac Ratcliffe. The line has stood out significantly in the first days of Rookie Camp, and the idea that the line could play together for the Flyers someday is certainly a glimpse into the future.

Just don't tell Phantoms head coach Scott Gordon, who is running the Rookie Camp, that one of them may fall into place at the NHL level immediately this season.

"Sometimes I say this is going to be a pretty good line for the Lehigh Valley Phantoms," Gordon quipped on Saturday at Rookie Camp in Voorhees.

It may only be a couple of days of practice for the three rookies -- all turning pro full-time for the 2019-20 season -- but the chemistry is starting to form early.

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Flyers Buy Out D Andrew MacDonald’s Contract

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The NHL’s buyout window opened on Saturday and the Flyers certainly had candidates to free up some cap space in advance of the free agency period.

One day after they acquired defenseman Matt Niskanen from the Capitals for Radko Gudas, they officially placed defenseman Andrew MacDonald on waivers for purposes of a buyout. MacDonald is expected to clear waivers and have the contract bought out, making him a free agent.

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After 2 Trying Seasons, Patrick Needs to Prove Himself in 2019-20

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(Photo: Kate Frese)

By Jeff Quake, Sports Talk Philly staff writer 

The moment that the Philadelphia Flyers discovered that they were going to pick second overall in the 2017 NHL Draft, they knew that they would get an exceptional player in either Nolan Patrick or Nico Hischier. The New Jersey Devils, who had the first overall pick, decided to go with Hischier, giving the Flyers the option to pick the star center playing for the Brandon Wheat Kings with the second overall selection.

Patrick made the team right out of rookie camp, but unfortunately had a rough start to his rookie season. Just three games into his NHL career, Patrick was hit up high and hard against the boards by then Anaheim Ducks forward Chris Wagner. Right away, Patrick looked shaken up, as he was slow to gather himself on the ice. Slowly but surely, Patrick started to get accustomed to the NHL and although his points didn’t show how lethal he can be, the 18-year-old rookie put up 30 points in 73 games.

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