On the day of the NHL trade deadline, the Philadelphia Flyers have sent 2021 fifth-round pick to the Montreal Canadiens for a center, Nate Thompson. His current contract expires at the end of this season, so this was a trade specifically for depth in a playoff push for the rest of the season. A fifth-round pick is a good value in this trade to the Canadiens in exchange for the 35-year-old NHL veteran. With only $1mil due on his contract this season, the Flyers aren’t damaged against their already restricted cap space. In all, this is a smart exchange.
When deep-diving into Nate Thompson’s 2019-2020 season, he has played in 63 games this year, tallied 14 points, scored a game-winning goal, racked up 103 hits on opposing players, and is winning 55.1% of his faceoffs. With the Philadelphia Flyers, expect him to battle with Tyler Pitlick for playing time for the duration of this season. Alain Vigneault could shake up the line-ups and put Pitlick on the wing with Thompson at center some nights. The ceiling for Thompson on this roster would be on the fourth line, which doesn’t damage any development of younger players who could be recalled from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Overall, it is a team-friendly trade.
Currently, third place in the NHL Metropolitan Division, the veteran depth for the Philadelphia Flyers is increasingly more important as the post-season approaches. With the Washington Capitals adding Ilya Kovalchuk and the Pittsburgh Penguins adding Patrick Marleau, the Flyers needed a veteran presence. In addition to the statistics from this season, Nate Thompson adds 62 games of playoff experience from 2015-2017. Most of that playoff experience was with the Anaheim Ducks. The hope is to add to that experience while in the Orange and Black.
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