Philly names their untouchables; here are four Flyers that Dubas should inquire about

Published January 29, 2022 at 5:38 PM
BY MIKE ARMENTI
During the January 28th edition of 32 Thoughts: The Podcast, Sportsnet's Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman spent a good chunk of time discussing the Philadelphia Flyers and something very interesting came up. When the Flyers' brass was asked who the "core" of the team would be moving forward, the names Sean Couturier, Joel Farabee, Ryan Ellis and Kevin Hayes were the ones mentioned.

Obviously, there are some noteworthy names there, but there are also some pretty big omissions. Keeping Couturier, Farabee, Ellis and Hayes means that the Flyers are not going the "scorched earth" route. That said, if Claude Giroux, Carter Hart, Travis Konecny, Ivan Provorov, Scott Laughton, Morgan Frost and Travis Sanheim can all be had for the right price, the Flyers are looking at a MAJOR retooling.

Claude Giroux's name has been tied to the Colorado Avalanche on a number of occasions, and if he is truly looking for a chance to compete for a Stanley Cup, the Avs would certainly give him a very good shot at one. While I'd love to see Giroux come in as a trade deadline rental for the Leafs, I just really don't see it happening, given the fact that the 34-year-old has a no-move clause and essentially controls his own fate, per GM Chuck Fletcher.

According to TSN's Chris Johnston, the Leafs are expected to pursue players with some term remaining at or ahead of the deadline, taking the opposite approach to the one taken last season, when the Buds targeted players on expiring contracts. With that in mind, there are at least 4 names available in Philly who I think Leafs GM Kyle Dubas should take a look at.


IVAN PROVOROV

The 25-year-old has been very up and down during his tenure in Philadelphia and a change of scenery could be just what the doctor ordered for the Russian blueliner. If the Leafs were to take a serious run at Provorov, they would certainly need to create some cap space for his $6.75M contract for 3 more seasons. The other issue here is that Provorov is a left shot and the Leafs, as we all know, are loaded up on the left side with Morgan Rielly, Jake Muzzin, Rasmus Sandin and Travis Dermott already in the fold.

TRAVIS KONECNY

Konecny posted three consecutive 24-goal seasons for the Flyers before showing a significant drop off in production over the last two seasons. Like Provorov, Konecny may benefit from a fresh start in a new city. Konecny would provide everything you'd want from a top-six forward in the playoffs. He's fast, he's tenacious, he can get under the skin of the opposition, he can score and he is a good power play contributor. Like in any deal for Provorov, the Leafs would have to move out some salary in order to fit Konecny's 3 more years at $5.5M under the cap.

SCOTT LAUGHTON

The Oakville, Ontario native inked a 5-year, $15M deal with the Flyers last season, and is signed through 2025-26 at $3M per season. Laughton plays a physical, two-way game and can play both center and left wing. The 27-year-old is not going to blow anyone away with his point production, but he is a player who is built for the playoffs and showcased what he's capable of in the postseason during the Flyers' run in 2019-20. Laughton posted 9 points in 15 games in the bubble.

CARTER HART

Ok, admittedly, this one is a pipe dream. Hart is signed for two more seasons after this one at $3.979M per season. Once his current deal expires, he'll be an RFA with arbitration rights. The 23-year-old has shown glimmers of brilliance in his young career, but at large, he has been quite inconsistent. That said, goaltender is probably the hardest position to play in hockey, and Hart has excelled at every level prior to reaching the highest one, so all signs point toward the Edmonton, Alberta native figuring things out in good time.

If Hart really is available in Philly, the cost would be astronomical. A young goalie with a high skill cap, term remaining, a modest cap hit and who will be under team control when his current deal expires is certainly going to net the Flyers an ENORMOUS package. He's a guy who I still very much believe will be a part of the solution in Philly. I can't see them moving him. But if they do, there won't be any shortage of teams calling GM Chuck Fletcher.

As far as likelihood, I'd say that the Leafs have a realistic shot at both Konecny and Laughton. Provorov and Hart are extreme long shots. Still fun to think about nonetheless.
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