The Columbus Blue Jackets already dealt with the Philadelphia Flyers once this summer and got fleeced, but are they willing to do it again? By the sounds of Thursday’s reports, it sure seems like it. The Flyers and Blue Jackets have apparently been talking about a Kevin Hayes move for a while now, but the Blue Jackets didn’t even come within a sniff of making the playoffs, so it doesn’t make all that much sense. Still, if the Blue Jackets wanted to continue to horde prospects and make a deal without giving away too much of their ammunition, they can do so.
Similarly, but not so similarly to Alex Newhook, things haven’t gone Cole Sillinger‘s way after a decent 2021-22 season. Except for Sillinger, the bottom completely fell out this season as he stumbled to just 11 points in 64 games, along with the Blue Jackets being downright terrible. Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen is apparently serious about winning, and with Kent Johnson, captain Boone Jenner, Jack Roslovic, Alexandre Texier, and potential draft pick Leo Carlsson all centers, the Blue Jackets really have no need for Sillinger. If they do decide to sell low on Sillinger, it would make sense for Daniel Briere and the Flyers to try and buy low.
Sean Couturier is expected to be back in the fold in 2023, and while the Flyers roster is bare, it’s not bare enough for it to be like throwing Sillinger to the wolves. John Tortorella is not the type of coach to play young players for the sake of it, but the general expectation is that the Flyers have nothing to play for this year, especially if more and more established roster players get jettisoned out of Philly. A change of scenery might be all it takes for the 12th overall pick in the 2021 draft to flourish. Right now, the opportunity doesn’t seem to be there for him in Columbus.