Everything’s coming up Flyers … well, at least with the 2019 NHL Draft.
After winning the trade with the Coyotes on Day 1 of the draft, Chuck Fletcher and the Philadelphia Flyers continued to make moves and find good value in their draft picks on Day 2. They traded up to get Bobby Brink, a first-round talent that was ranked in the top-15 by some, and found a few more guys like Ronnie Attard, Egor Serdyuk and Bryce Brodzinski that could end up being great value picks.
By continuing to draft well on Day 2, Fletcher and the Flyers received high marks from pundits around the league. Cam York got the ball rolling on Friday night, then Brink helped the Flyers start off Saturday with a bang as they rounded out their seven-prospect draft class.
ESPN’s Chris Peters had the Flyers as one of his winners from round one (while the Penguins were a loser), and in his draft grades (paywall) he had more praise for Fletcher and Co. after the draft was complete.
The Flyers were one of five teams to receive a grade in the ‘A’ range with four teams (Hurricanes, Kings, Devils, Rangers) receiving an ‘A’, while the Flyers received an ‘A-’. However, the Devils and Rangers’ grades were more about lucking into the top two picks than anything else.
Here’s what Peters had to say about the Flyers’ draft.
“Philadelphia Flyers: A-
Favorite pick: Bobby Brink
The Flyers had a really strong draft that was aided by moving some picks around and getting guys they liked. Cam York was the No. 2 defenseman on my board, and they managed to pick up an asset while trading down to get him. Then they used that pick to move up and land Brink, who slipped out of the first round. York jumps into plays with relative ease and has good instincts for when he has to get back — and his defensive game improved greatly over the past two seasons. And Brink comes with elite vision and offensive sense. At No. 72, they landed the USHL’s best player in productive defenseman Ronnie Attard.
I thought the Flyers also made a nice bet on Minnesota Mr. Hockey, Bryce Brodzinski, who has a lot of developing left to do. The overall haul might be more of a B-plus grade, but I liked the way they built their board with effective trades.”
Peters wasn’t the only one impressed with the Flyers’ draft haul.
Rotoworld’s Corey Abbott also gave the Flyers an ‘A’ grade, which was tied for second best (with three others) in the Eastern Conference.
First Round Selection(s): Cam York (14th)
The Flyers had a chance to take Cole Caufield or Peyton Krebs with their first-round pick, but decided to choose York instead. The team already has some good forward prospects in the system and their better defense prospects are transitioning to being full-time NHLers, so the move makes sense…
Philadelphia added another first-round talent in the second round when they moved up to take Bobby Brink at 34th overall. Brink is a great playmaker and he has a high-compete level. He could make plenty of teams regret passing him in the first round.
The selections of Ronnie Attard (72nd) and Egor Serdyuk (165th) and Bryce Brodzinski (196th) have the potential of bringing some value to the organization in the long run as well.”
The Flyers definitely got great value out of their picks this year. Cam York helps restock the defensive cupboard while Bobby Brink adds another talented forward to the prospect pool, and they snagged him in the second round.
Ron Hextall and Co. were able to find value late in the draft with Oskar Lindblom highlighting the group of mid-to-late rounders that have a chance to make an impact in the NHL. It looks like the scouting staff that’s left behind after the departure of Hextall and Chris Pryor was able to come together with Fletcher and Brent Flahr to have a successful draft.
The Flyers are in win-now mode, but it’s always good to have a good prospect pool whether it be to replace aging core players in a few years or to use them in a trade for another win-now piece.
Fletcher’s first offseason in Philadelphia is off to a great start.