Tuesday’s Philadelphia Flyers practice featured a scrimmage that created more than a few storylines. Speculation will reign supreme throughout the NHL’s return-to-play protocol. The one thing on everyone’s mind is the mystery behind Carter Hart’s departure from the team scrimmage. While Hart’s departure takes top priority, it’s important to reflect on the plethora of great sights on display today. We were able to catch up with a current Frank J. Selke Trophy finalist, Sean Couturier, about his thoughts from today’s scrimmage.
“Today we had three lines going. Me, G, and Jake, we know each other out there. We’re just trying to find our rhythm again. I thought it went pretty well today.”Sean Couturier; 7/21/20
A combination of Jakub Voracek, Claude Giroux, and Sean Couturier is a familiar sight on the first line. Over the last few practices, the lines were flipped around to experiment with other players. Today was a return to familiarity for Couturier, who felt right at home with Voracek and Giroux. Couturier is right, today’s line did work out well. Voracek had a goal and Giroux scored the overtime winner.
“For me personally and as a line, we’re just trying to play the right way. Get some rhythm and find our chemistry. Find each other out there. Try to get going offensively.”Sean Couturier; 7/21/20
Two weeks is a fair amount of time for a training camp only because every other team in the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs is under the same restrictions. It’s like riding a bike, which takes just a little bit of time to master after time away. The Philadelphia Flyers are still mastering the team chemistry and line synergy aspect. By the end of their exhibition game against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Flyers will be more locked in.
“We’re improving. Our pace is getting better. Guys are skating better. Execution is a little better. We can build on that.”Sean Couturier; 7/21/20
Sean Couturier scored a goal today. He’s finding his groove along with his teammates like Joel Farabee, Tyler Pitlick, and Carsen Twarynski. One player who has been a highlight throughout camp on the defensive side is Justin Braun. That trade could likely work out tremendously in the playoffs. The most important thing to the Philadelphia Flyers is finding the rhythm that made them the hottest team in the league before the pause.
“We know we have a good team. We showed it throughout the year. Even at the end there, we were one of the hottest teams. I think it’s just important to get back to the rhythm we were and the playing we were playing.”Sean Couturier; 7/21/20
Everything is pure speculation about Carter Hart’s absence from the rest of today’s scrimmage. Kevin Hayes, Shayne Gostisbehere, and Morgan Frost weren’t aware of his departure from the bench. While Hart is a big part of the Philadelphia Flyers franchise, Brian Elliott has been electric this season. It’s worth mentioning that Kirill Ustimenko and Alex Lyon made quality saves today against top players such as Travis Konecny and James van Riemsdyk. No updates have been released regarding Hart, which will likely remain the case.
“Obviously, he’s a big part of our team. He’s a good young goalie. Let’s not forget we have Moose here. A great veteran. Has a lot of experience. He’s been great for us all year.”Sean Couturier; 7/21/20
On a positive note, Sean Couturier raved about Joel Farabee. He’s been a topic of conversation, especially when speaking to the Philadelphia Flyers assistant coach, Mike Yeo. It’s exciting when a rookie could spark such an impact for a team in the playoffs. The tenacity Farabee showed after his call up from the AHL when James van Riemsdyk was injured earned him a place on the Flyers roster.
“I think since the start of the camp, he’s looked real good. He’s got some jump. That’s what you want to see from a young player.”Sean Couturier; 7/21/20
The Philadelphia Flyers return to practice tomorrow and will head for the Toronto bubble before the end of this week.
Photo Credit: Alex Mcintyre