It’s no secret that the Flyers are in for a long offseason. The rebuild will be underway this summer as more than a few players have likely played their last game for the organization. The focus is on the younger players and what they can do.
Danny Briere is potentially the one that will be leading the way and he has laid out his plan quite clearly. This is going to take some time and it has to be done the right way if the Flyers want to find themselves as a top team again someday. It doesn’t mean they will be tearing everything down. But expect to have seen some players to have played their final games in Philadelphia.
Veterans like Kevin Hayes and James van Riemsdyk are well aware of how things look for them. The former mentioned having received the message months ago in terms of where he stood on the team. And for the latter, he was expected to be traded at the deadline, calling the saga that transpired “one of the most disappointing moments” in his career.
There are a few others who could see themselves out of Philadelphia. Tony DeAngelo was scratched for the final five games of the season. To this day, DeAngelo still isn’t quite sure why he was scratched and felt he should’ve played.
For those that are expected to be around for the short term and potentially long term, there’s a belief that this rebuild may not take as long as some think.
The emergence of younger players gives the Flyers a lot to look forward to. Plenty of them had career seasons or proved themselves to be a valuable asset to this team. Travis Konecny hit 30 goals, Owen Tippett had 27 goals, and Morgan Frost was close to his own 20-goal campaign. Noah Cates established himself as a reliable player during his first season, even drawing comparisons to Sean Couturier.
"“Catesy, it’s just really impressive what he was able to do,” Travis Konecny said on Noah Cates. “I bring him up last because I played with him, and I had an opportunity to play like half my games with him and just see what he can do. For him to remind me that much of Coots in his first season is really, really impressive."
There’s a bright future ahead for plenty of these players and it has given the Flyers a lot of positives to look at. Having a good foundation of youth is key to any rebuilding process. But getting back players like Couturier and Cam Atkinson can go a long way towards helping as well.
"“A lot of people are writing us off again already. I think a lot of people forget Coots won a Selke before he got hurt and was one of the top players in the league. Cam’s been a 40-goal scorer in this league.” Joel Farabee said about Couturier and Atkinson. “You add both those guys to the offense. I think it helps a lot and it takes pressure off a lot of other guys. I really don’t think we’re too far away. I think we have a lot of good pieces, a lot of good players to build around.”"
Those two factors should certainly help the Flyers back into contention. But it is not going to be the only things that will have to trend their way. As Briere said, it’s going to take some time to make things right here. The belief the Flyers have about how things could go is a positive one.
Time will tell if beliefs are realistic. Sit back folks, it’s likely to be a long few months.