From Buffalo, New York to Chicago, Illinois the Flyers were finally given some good fortune in the draft when they jumped up 11 spots from 13 to 2 in the draft lottery. They would pick between New Jersey, who selected Nico Hischier 1st overall, and Dallas, selecting Miro Heiskanen 3rd overall.
First Pick: Round 1 Pick 2 (2)
Original Pick: Nolan Patrick (C)
New Pick: Cale Makar (D) (4)
The Flyers were seemingly in a great spot. They were one of the best teams to miss the postseason and would be awarded the second overall pick, getting one of Nico Hischier or Nolan Patrick, whoever the Devils didn’t pick. The Devils chose Hischier, leading to Ron Hextall and the Flyers taking Nolan Patrick second overall. Nolan Patrick would have a pretty solid rookie season with 30 points in 73 games, but would soon begin his battle with head injuries eventually sitting out the entire 2019-20 season. Patrick would be traded in the summer of 2021, with Phil Myers, for Ryan Ellis from Nashville, then immediately traded to Vegas for Cody Glass. In 222 NHL games between Vegas and Philadelphia, he has 32 goals and 45 assists for 77 points. Cale Makar was taken two spots later by the historically bad Colorado Avalanche. He would spend his first two seasons post-draft at UMass Amherst before joining Colorado for the 2019 playoffs. He would win the Calder as the top rookie for the 2019-20 season. In his 3 full seasons thus far, he has 48 goals and 132 assists for 180 points in 178 games. He has been to one All-Star Game (2022), has finished top 10 in Norris voting in his first three seasons, finished second in 2020-21, ninth during his rookie year and won it this past season (2021-22), was on the 2019-20 NHL All-Rookie Team, and was named to the NHL’s First All-Star Team for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons. Makar would win the Conn Smythe in 2022, becoming the first player to unanimously be named winner since the PWHA started revealing votes, as he lead Colorado to their third Stanley Cup in franchise history.
Others in contention: Miro Heiskanen (3), Elias Pettersson (5)
Second Pick: Round 1 Pick 27 (27)
Original Pick: Morgan Frost (C)
New Pick: Jason Robertson (RW) (39)
This pick was acquired in a June 23, 2017, Draft Day trade that sent Brayden Schenn to the Blues for Jori Lehterä, their 2018 1st, and this pick.
After selecting second overall, Ron Hextall would make a move to acquire another pick in the first round, this one being St Louis’s pick. They took Morgan Frost. Morgan Frost has been a long-awaited prospect for the Flyers and has spent the past few seasons in and out of the lineup before getting a full shot this past season. In 77 games with the Flyers, Frost has 7 goals and 16 assists for 23 points. 12 spots later, Dallas would pick Jason Robertson. At first, Robertson was a pretty unknown player for most fans until his rookie season in 2020-21 when he competed with Kirill Kaprizov for top rookie. In 128 games with the Stars, Robertson has put up 58 goals and 67 assists for 125 points. He has quickly become one of the best players for Dallas. He was named to the NHL’s All-Rookie Team for the 2020-21 season and finished behind only Kirill Kaprizov in Calder voting. Robertson finished 13th in Hart voting for the 2021-22 season.
Others in contention: Shane Bowers (28), Henri Jokiharju (29), Eeli Tolvanen (30), Klim Kostin (31), Connor Timmins (32), Kole Lind (33)
Third Pick: Round 2 Pick 4 (35)
Original Pick: Isaac Ratcliffe (C)
New Pick: Alexandre Texier (C) (45)
This pick was acquired in a June 24, 2017, Draft Day trade that sent our 2017 2nd (44-Filip Westerlund) and 3rd (75-Nate Scharr) along with the Islanders’ 4th in 2017 (108-Noel Hoefenmayer) to Arizona for this pick.
Another draft-day trade saw the Flyers move up 11 spots to select the tall 6’6 forward Isaac Ratcliffe. He had a lot of hype, mostly because of his height, but has failed to live up to expectations, mainly playing in the AHL after graduating from juniors. Ratcliffe has played in 10 games scoring 1 goal and 3 assists for 4 points. Alexandre Texier would’ve been able to be selected by the Flyers if they never moved up. A rare French NHL player, Texier isn’t an elite center, but has been a solid bottom-six center. In 123 games with the Blue Jackets, Texier has 22 goals and 27 assists for 49 points.
Others in contention: Jesper Boqvist (36), Jaret Anderson-Dolan (41), Jack Studnicka (53), Ukko-Peka Luukkonen (54), Morgan Geekie (67)
Fourth Pick: Round 3 Pick 18 (80)
Original Pick: Kirill Ustimenko (G)
New Pick: Jeremy Swayman (G) (111)
This pick was acquired in a June 29, 2015 trade that sent Zac Rinaldo to the Bruins for this pick.
The fourth pick for the Flyers in 2017 would still be a goalie, but one that has played games in the NHL. Kirill Ustimenko has yet to make an NHL start and has seen his career in North America not go the way he expected, spending most of his time in the ECHL with the Reading Royals. Jeremy Swayman came onto the scene during the Covid shortened 2020-21 season after some injuries to Boston’s top tandem of Rask and Halak. Swayman and Ullmark would be the top tandem for most of the season, more or less splitting games this past season. In 51 games for the Bruins, Swayman has a record of 30-17-3 with a .920 sv%, a 2.23 GAA, and 5 shutouts. Swayman was named the goalie for the 2021-22 NHL All-Rookie Team.
Others in contention: Cale Fleury (87), Jack Rathbone (95), Mikey Anderson (103)
Fifth Pick: Round 4 Pick 13 (106)
Original Pick: Matthew Strome (LW)
New Pick: Drake Batherson (C) (121)
The youngest of the Strome Brothers, Matthew has done the least amount. Matthew has yet to play an NHL game. On the other hand, Drake Batherson has become one of the key pieces of the young Senators team. Batherson has really started coming into his own these past two seasons, cementing himself as one of the major pieces of the Sens’ rebuild. He was nearly a point-per-game player this past year until he was injured about halfway through. In 145 games with the Sens, Batherson has 40 goals and 57 assists for 97 points.
Others in contention: Emil Bemstrom (117)
Sixth Pick: Round 4 Pick 14 (107)
Original Pick: Maxim Sushko (RW)
New Pick: Sebastian Aho (D) (139)
This pick was acquired in a March 1, 2017 trade that sent Mark Streit to Tampa Bay in exchange for Valtteri Filppula, LA’s 2017 7th (196-Wyatt Kalynuk), and this pick.
Maxim Sushko has played in 2 NHL games for the Flyers going pointless. He has spent the majority of his North American career in the AHL. Sebastian Aho, no not that one, has been a solid seventh defenseman. In 61 games with the Islanders, Aho has 4 goals and 14 assists for 18 points.
Others in contention: Emil Bemstrom (117)
Seventh Pick: Round 5 Pick 13 (137)
Original Pick: Noah Cates (LW)
New Pick: Noah Cates
Noah Cates took his time on his path to the NHL, completing all four years of college hockey before signing with the Flyers this past season. Cates has only played in 16 games producing 5 goals and 4 assists for 9 points but has shown some good talent for a more mature rookie player that could be a solid piece for the Flyers long term.
Others in contention: none
Eighth Pick: Round 6 Pick 13 (168)
Original Pick: Olle Lycksell (RW)
New Pick: Wyatt Kalynuk (D) (196)
Olle Lycksell has never played in North America, spending his whole career playing for his home country’s league of the SHL. He has put up some solid numbers lately, but that doesn’t help the Flyers on this side of the Atlantic. Wyatt Kalynuk was the final pick by the Flyers in this draft and would spend three years playing for the Wisconsin Badgers before becoming a UFA and signing with the Blackhawks in 2020. He would play in 26 games during these past two seasons for the Blackhawks registering 4 goals and 5 assists for 9 points.
Others in contention: Morgan Barron (174)
Ninth Pick: Round 7 Pick 10 (196)
Original Pick: Wyatt Kalynuk (D)
New Pick: Cayden Primeau (G) (199)
This pick was acquired in a March 1, 2017 trade that sent Mark Streit to the Lightning for Valtteri Filppula, their 4th (107-Maxim Sushko) and this pick, which was LA’s 7th with a condition. The condition would be that we would receive LA’s 7th if Tampa Bay traded Streit, which they did almost immediately to Pittsburgh.
All I needed to say about Kalynuk was said for the pick before. Cayden Primeau was a part of the wild sequence of Montreal and Philadelphia making a swap for 7th-round picks. The son of former Flyers captain Keith Primeau, Cayden would begin his journey and become a goalie prospect that some Habs fans see as the successor to Carey Price. In 18 games with the Canadiens, Primeau has a record of 3-10-2 with a .874 sv% and 4.21 GAA. Most of his games came behind the last-place Canadiens team of this past season.
Others in contention: none
Draft Picks Traded Away
2nd (44- Filip Westerlund)+3rd (75-Nate Scharr)+NYI 4th Noel Hoefenmayer) to ARZ for 2nd (35-Isaac Ratcliffe)
7th (199-Cayden Primeau) to MTL for their 2018 7th
Flyers Real 2017 Draft
Flyers New 2017 Draft
By Noah Caplan (@Phlyers24 and @NoahlyPod)
Photo creds: Wikipedia