After training camp took away the opportunity for Tanner Laczynski to fight for a roster spot, he was given another chance. The Flyers called him up to the taxi squad after the team struggled in March. He had found his game down with the Phantoms.
In 14 games with the AHL squad, Laczynski had posted six goals and 10 points. One of the team’s best players, he recorded those six goals in his last five games before being called up.
Five games was all he was able to get in the NHL injury struck again. After getting a second opinion recently, Laczynski underwent surgery for a torn labrum in his right hip. The recovery time for that is approximately 16 weeks.
That would put him back around August if all goes well. And it would set him up to once again compete for a roster spot in September. That is if next season is able to begin on a semi-regular basis. The hope is for the league to return to as close to a normal schedule as they could.
For Laczynski, this is another tough blow. He had appeared in five games for the Flyers during his time. And while he hadn’t registered a point, he didn’t look out of place during that time. So he will end up losing out on what could have been a big opportunity to impress ahead of next season.
With the Flyers all but officially eliminated from playoff contention, this was a good time to evaluate some of the team’s younger prospects. Wade Allison, Jackson Cates and now Egor Zamula are getting that opportunity to impress.
Alain Vigneault did like what he had seen from Laczynski while he was in the lineup. He talked on Monday about his play and what he had seen from the young forward after the Flyers announced the surgery and recovery time.
"“Obviously it’s a very small sample, a very small segment, but he did do all of the things that Chuck had said and Flahrsy had said. Good two-way guy, smart, plays that 200-foot game. Hopefully he gets back to 100 percent here in the next four months and he’s ready for training camp next year. We have a normal camp and he can show us what he can do.”"
That is something that Vigneault had mentioned before, doing all of the things he was told Laczynski could do. So it was a common theme in his play with the Flyers. There have been encouraging signs from what the young forward was able to do during his time in the NHL.
It also helps when you’re able to earn praise from the captain as well. Giroux mentioned last week that him and Allison are both smart hockey players. The way started, he said you could tell they came in with a high hockey IQ by the way they skated and moved the puck well.
So after all was said and done on his injury, Laczynski is missing the last 13 games of the season. He last played on April 15th against the Penguins, seeing just over 10 minutes of ice time. It was on par with his averages thus far so it’s tough to say exactly when the injury took place.
But being able to make an impression early on will do nothing but help Laczynski’s chances of earning a roster spot next season.