Rookie Camp is underway and all eyes are on the top prospects. No one is in the spotlight more than second overall pick Nolan Patrick.
The Philadelphia Flyers lucked into the second-overall pick and subsequently Nolan Patrick, and that is a huge step forward for the franchise. The first-round pick has the size, skill, and determination to make the roster in his rookie season.
“Yeah, I think so,” Patrick said when asked if he thinks he can earn a spot on the Flyers. “That’s my goal coming in and I’m just going to compete as hard as I can and do everything that I can to earn a spot.”
And he should be able to earn that spot. With the offseason trade of Brayden Schenn there is a gaping hole in the Flyers’ forward group. Patrick can fill that hole.
Patrick fell into the Flyers’ lap after battling through injuries last season, but an offseason surgery prior to the draft seems to have fixed the issue. He was skating just a few weeks after surgery and has been feeling 100 percent leading up to Rookie Camp. It’s a complete different feeling than after his first surgery.
“I felt pain the first skate back [after my first surgery],” Patrick said. But that is no longer the case. “My first skate back here right after Development Camp there was no pain at all. It was just conditioning and getting my feet back under me.”
“Obviously it was done right the second time and I’m happy to be done with that. It was quite a while with that injury but I’m happy to put it behind me.”
Patrick admitted that he was only 60 or 70 percent during most of last season, but he is back to his normal self. “I’ve felt 100 percent for about three weeks,” Patrick said via the Flyers. “All the pain is gone [from offseason hernia repair surgery].”
Rookie Camp is the first opportunity for Patrick to skate with his fellow prospects and future teammates, and he couldn’t be more ready for it. “It was exciting. It my first time skating out here with some of the guys. It felt good for a first skate, and do some battle drills,” he said.
It was only day one, but it seems like Patrick is already out there proving that he belongs. He’ll have another day with the rookies on Tuesday before the Rookie Game on Wednesday night. Then it’ll be time for Training Camp to begin this weekend.
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