The Philadelphia Flyers’ offense is about as stale as a week-old donut. There needs to be some serious overhaul of the forwards during the 2022 offseason in order to try and revive the goalscoring. Luckily, there are some big names out there this offseason that could jump start the foundation that is already on the roster. It won’t be cheap or painless, but it could be the difference between success and failure during the 2022-23 season.
Number 5: Dylan Strome
The Flyers are going to have to get creative to address their center depth, or lack thereof, and Chicago Blackhawks’ 25-year-old restricted free agent Dylan Strome may be a good fit for their third line center. He hasn’t quite lived up to the third overall pick hype, but he did manage to finally figure things out during the 2021-22 season where he posted 22 goals and 48 points in 69 games. He’s young enough to fit in with the current age group on the roster and probably cheap enough to take a chance on and he has enough of an upside to succeed as a middle-six center.
Number 4: David Pastrnak
Rumors emerged over the last few weeks that 26-year-old David Pastrnak’s time in Boston may ultimately be coming to an end, but with a year left on his deal, the decision could come as late as 2023 free agency. If the Bruins decide to move on from him sooner rather than later, the Flyers need to be all over the Czech forward. He has recorded three hat tricks against the Flyers in the last two seasons alone, so this could be a prime example of adding a “Flyers killer” just so the chaos is on their side rather than against them.
Number 3: Nazem Kadri
Kadri’s name has been linked to the Flyers for quite some time now. He is one of the few available centers with any kind of potential and the Flyers are starved for talent down the middle. A perfect match. The only problem is Kadri will turn 32 on the eve of the 2022-23 season and just had a career year with the Avalanche, posting 87 points in 71 games. Considering the Flyers already have 30 year olds Kevin Hayes and Sean Couturier locked up to big-money, long-term deals, adding a third player on the wrong side of 30 to a big-money, long-term deal sounds like a terrible idea for the longterm outlook of the franchise. Though the Flyers will be desperate for a real solution at center and so far, Kadri appears to be one of the few available options. Time will tell if the months of speculation will turn out to be true of false.
Number 2: Johnny Gaudreau
By now, it’s no secret that South Jersey native Johnny Gaudreau’s contract with the Calgary Flames is up and if he makes it to free agency, the Flyers are going to be all over him. The offensively stale Flyers could really use the offensive talent Gaudreau would inject into the team. He recorded 115 points in 2021-22 and has 609 points in 602 NHL games. He’ll turn 29 in August, and will more than likely demand a huge contract, but the Flyers really aren’t in a position to be picky when it comes to players that could potentially salvage the franchise.
Number 1: Alex DeBrincat
While Gaudreau is the most enticing free agent option, Alex DeBrincat is the most attractive trade option. The 24-year-old is a two-time 40-goal scorer has one year left at a $6.4 million cap hit and will be a restricted free agent next summer. He recorded 41 goals and 78 points in 82 games for the Blackhawks in 2021-22, with 28 of those points coming in the powerplay. He’d be exactly what the doctor ordered for the Flyers, but it all comes down to whether or not the Flyers will pay the price to enter the DeBrincat sweepstakes.
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)
photo credit: nhl.com