Thursday, January 7, 2016

Oh Yeah There Was Another Trade Involving The Flyers Yesterday

As big as the Lecavalier/Schenn/Weal trade was, it wasn't the most preposterous trade involving the Flyers that took place yesterday. I'll admit, shedding the 2+ year/$10+ million contract seems a little insane - but take a look at this doozy:

That's the Ottawa 67s, a Canadian junior team, shipping their captain and best player (and future Flyer) Travis Konecny away for EIGHT draft picks.

The most ridiculous part of all is all of that may end up being a six month rental. If Konecny makes the Flyers next summer, he's not going to play for Sarnia anyway.

With Konecny (at least until he went to Finland for the World Juniors), the 67s had been in the middle of the OHL's East Divison, a significant step below the first place Kingston Frontenacs. They were just 2-8 in their past 10 games, and they didn't seem to be headed anywhere even with Konecny on the team.

So, with all eyes on the future, they dumped him.

Sarnia gave up a truckload of draft picks over the next few years to immediately bolster their lineup with Konecny (38 assists and 45 points in 29 games this season) and Sam Studnicka (16 goals and 26 points in 31 games). Both players also held leadership roles in Ottawa, Konecny the captain and Studnicka his alternate.

The Sting have just six more points than the 67s on the season, but they figure to finish in second place in the OHL's West Division with Konecny and Studnicka on board. Owner and Head Coach Derian Hatcher (Former Flyer Alert) is looking to lead the team to its first OHL championship.

So, naturally, like a completely normal and rational Flyers fan, I looked at who's on the Sting because we're going to be seeing their names a lot if they end up playing with Trav #2. (Trav #1, of course, is Travis Sanheim, who plays his junior hockey in Calgary.) Let's take a look at some of those guys (with quotes from Elite Prospects):

Wise Men Say Only Fools Rush In, But I Can't Help Falling In Love With You

Travis Konecny, Center/Winger, Drafted #24 by the Flyers in 2015

  • 7 goals, 38 assists, 45 points, +7 in 29 games with Ottawa
  • "Willing to do anything to win a game"
  • "Dynamic skating ability, incredible hockey sense, electrifying puckhandling skills, lighning release"
  • Swoon. Love you, Trav
Other Guys That Have Already Been Drafted

Pavel Zacha, Center/Winger, Drafted #6 by the Devils in 2015
  • 17 goals, 13 assists, 30 points, +6 in 23 games with Sarnia
  • "offensively dynamic center with size, speed, and skill"
  • "high-end offensive abilities, can be depended on to create and finish dangerous scoring chances"
  • Confession time: I wanted the Flyers to take him last summer, but they took Ivan Provorov with pick number 7, so I'd say it worked out for us

Josh Jacobs, Defenseman, Drafted #41 by the Devils in 2014
  • 1 goal, 13 assists, 14 points, +7 in 35 games with Sarnia
  • "smooth-skating two-way defenseman"
  • "has some mental lapses and his game has been hot or cold this season"
Nikita Korostelev, Winger, Drafted #185 by the Maple Leafs in 2015
  • 13 goals, 12 assists, 25 points, +2 in 25 games with Sarnia
  • "deft skater that plays a skill-based, puck-possession game"
  • "a very creative sniper that can set up, score, and play physical"
Matt Mistele, Winger, Drafted #180 by the Kings in 2014
  • 17 goals, 15 assists, 32 points, -10 in 19 games with Oshawa and 10 games with Sarnia
  • "opportunistic forward with excellent positioning"
  • "decent offensive skills and a solid shot"
Prospects For The Upcoming NHL Draft

Jordan Kyrou, Center/Winger, 2016 Draft Prospect

  • 7 goals, 20 assists, 27 points, +15 in 33 games with Sarnia
  • Figures to be a mid-to-late round selection, though I'm having a hard time finding any information about him so he may end up going undrafted
Jakob Chychrun, Defenseman, 2016 Draft Prospect
  • 5 goals, 19 assists, 24 points, +10 in 33 games with Sarnia
  • Ranked in the top 5 prospects for next summer's draft by Hockeyprospect, ISS, and McKeen's
  • "the best defenseman of the 2016 draft class" according to THN
  • He's in the range of guys that could end up being drafted by the Flyers
  • His dad (Jeff) was drafted by the Flyers in 1984, and won a Stanley Cup with the Penguins in 1992 after he stabbed the city of Philadelphia in the back
Older Guys (By Junior Hockey Standards) That Were Not Drafted By NHL Teams

Sam Studnicka, Center, Undrafted
  • 16 goals, 10 assists, 26 points, +2 in 31 games with Ottawa
  • "energy guy"
  • Probably the oldest guy on the team, as he turns 21 a week from tomorrow
  • His younger brother, Jack, plays in Oshawa and is eligible for the 2017 draft
Jeff King, Defenseman, Undrafted
  • 4 goals, 17 assists, 21 points, +22 in 33 games with Sarnia
  • Turns 20 next month
Patrick White, Center, Undrafted
  • 8 goals, 8 assists, 16 points, +15 in 35 games with Sarnia
  • Also turns 20 next month
Hayden Hodgson, Winger, Undrafted
  • 5 goals, 9 assists, 14 points, +1 in 35 games with Sarnia
  • Turns 20 in March
Troy LaJeunesse, Winger, Undrafted
  • 9 goals, 12 assists, 21 points, +18 in 33 games with Sarnia
  • Not quite as old as the rest of this group, as he will only be 19 by the time this season ends
Starting Five

I know it probably won't happen, because I'd expect DH to split up Konecny and Zacha, but how's this for a "crunch time/need a goal to tie or win/throw your best players on the ice" lineup?

Forwards: Konecny, Zacha, Korostelev 
Defensemen: Chychrun, Jacobs

J. Ross Robertson Cup, here we come!

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