With 3 second round picks in the NHL draft, the Philadelphia Flyers used the opportunity to pile up forward prospects.
With a surplus of defense prospects, there was some hand-wringing about GM Ron Hextall’s philosophy of taking the best player available. Philadelphia Flyers nation was looking for goal scoring wingers, primarily. Turns out the fans were partially right, and partially wrong.
After surprising in the first round by trading down and taking a center, Hextall used 4 picks in the 2nd and 3rd rounds to take another center, a goalie, and 2 wingers.
Pascal Laberge, C, #36 Overall
The Flyers picked early in the long Saturday of the NHL draft. Picking 36th overall as a reward for trading down 4 spots in the opening round, the Flyers selected Pascal Laberge.
Laberge is a 6’1″ center, ranked #33 in the pre-draft central scouting rankings. Eliteprospects describes Laberge as “a tough and spirited two-way forward with a high level of hockey sense.” They also say he uses his size to shield the puck, has goal-scorer’s hands, but tends to pass more. Sounds a lot like Rubtsov.
Of particular interest for Laberge is a personal story as well. Laberge experienced more than his share of personal tragedy this season due to family illnesses. Laberge wrote about it in the Player’s Tribune. Give it a look.
Carter Hart, G, #48 Overall
The Philadelphia Flyers used their 2nd, 2nd round pick on a goalie. This was the first goalie taken in the draft overall, the latest ever for the first goalie in a draft.
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Carter Hart only stands at 6’1″, not joining the trend of goalie prospects being towering guys (think Flyers prospect Anthony Stolarz at 6’6″). Hart is also known for concentration and focus, and his positioning. He is the reigning CHL goalie of the year, after playing 63 games last season.
That reputation as a thinker was a reinforced after Hart’s notable use of a sports psychologist this season. Maybe that’s a good idea, considering goalies are often thought of as introverted weirdos!
Wade Allison, RW, #52 Overall
With their 3rd and final pick in the 2nd round, the Flyers finally took the winger everyone was waiting for in Wade Allison.
Allison is a 6’2″ winger ranked #84 overall by central scouting, skyrocketing up from his midseason ranking of 277. Allison scored 25 goals and 22 points in the USHL this season, and is committed to Western Michigan University next season.
Allison describes himself as “a big, powerful player who likes to battle down low, like to be physical, take the puck to the net, [he] like[s] to shoot the puck.” He also says he models his game after NHLers Troy Brouwer and Jeff Carter.
Carsen Twarynski, LW, #82 Overall
Rounding out the Flyers flurry of picks in the 2nd and 3rd round, the Philadelphia Flyers selected Carsen Twarynski 82nd overall. Twarynski is another 6’2″ winger, ranked #87 overall by central scouting, also shooting up significantly from his 132 midseason ranking.
Twarynski played with Calgary in the WHL, scoring 20 goals and 45 points in 67 games. Twarynski is another power forward, and a teammate of Flyers prospects Travis Sanheim and Radel Fazleev in Calgary. He has also switched back and forth between forward and defense the last few years, but now is committed to forward.
Twarynski’s biggest strength is his strength and compete level. Teams always feel good about a player like this who’s so competitive and has no holes in his games, even if his ceiling as a future pro is not considered very high.