Notebook Flyers: York and Allison Could Impact Changeover Offseason | Sports
The Flyers are likely to enter their fifth non-playoff series in the past nine years on Tuesday.
Since well before the trade deadline, chief executive Chuck Fletcher has hinted, or bluntly admits, a clear need for change, although salary cap issues and high salaries for veterans on long-term contracts will likely hamper his efforts on this front.
Either way, Fletcher hit the go button on his offseason tinker by ordering head coach Alain Vigneault to incorporate future stars Wade Allison and Cam York into the ending death march. Seasonal Flyers.
York, the 20-year-old from Anaheim, Calif., Was the Flyers’ first draft pick (14th overall) in 2019. In two years at the University of Michigan, the strength of the blue line goes both ways has been compiled. 36 points (9 goals, 27 assists) in 54 games, then captained the United States World Junior Championship team and won the gold medal. He signed his pro-level contract with the Flyers at the end of March and averaged nearly a point per game in a short stint with the Phantoms before being called up.
Allison, 23, was a second-round pick in 2016. In a dozen Flyers games this season he has scored four times and in eight games with the late-starting Phantoms he has scored four goals and recorded five assists. .
With such an infusion of youngsters, the Flyers barely seemed inclined for peace on Friday night, as Allison’s two goals and the consistent presence of York’s blue line in his NHL debut contributed to the 4-2 victory. of the Flyers on the road against the current East Division finalist, Washington.
The loss dealt the Capitals a heavy blow as they tried to keep pace with the Pittsburgh Penguins, who earned their third straight victory in their season finale against Buffalo on Saturday to move closer to the division title.
The Capitals had to defeat the Flyers in the teams’ second leg on Saturday night, then beat the Bruins in their final on Tuesday to pass the Pens in a tie-break for the No.1 seed.
Of course, the playoff seeds are the furthest thing on the Flyers’ mind right now.
And you can tell by listening to their head coach.
“I want my players to behave as professionals, to come out and play hard,” said Alain Vigneault ahead of the capital’s rematch on Saturday. “But I’m not putting much into performance right now. Games don’t mean much, so in my opinion, it’s not a ‘statement’ game, far from it. expect the players to come out and play hard. “
Certainly rookies Allison and York, and sophomore Joel Farabee, who also scored on Friday, should have no problem getting motivated for this game and Monday’s late end of season with the New Jersey Devils. at the Wells Fargo Center.
As for those older guys with great long term contacts? Well, time will tell.
One thing is certain, however: the more upstarts continue to impress, the more others should feel the push.
“I thought he looked good,” senior defensive partner Justin Braun said of York’s major league debut on Friday. “He looked balanced on the puck, made the right plays on the breakouts, skated well in the neutral zone … yes, for a first game I thought he looked good.”
Vigneault agreed about York, saying, “I only really saw him for a practice and a game, but like I mentioned yesterday I thought he looked smooth. seems like a calm young man but definitely showed some positive things yesterday on the ice and i hope he follows tonight. “
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NOTES >> Alex Lyon started at the net against the Caps on Saturday night, but Vigneault said Brian Elliott would make the start on Monday, which should be his last game as a Flyer. … Braun, who arrived in the summer of 2019 with veteran Matt Niskanen, in the Youth Flyers defensive body: “Lots of young guys, and Matt and I stabilized him (last season). But losing him was huge. this year. ”Niskanen retired after the 2020 playoffs.