2021 Flyers Rookie Camp: All you need to know from day two

Flyers' Morgan Frost
Flyers’ Morgan Frost (Photo Credit: Alex McIntyre)

Tyson Foerster and Egor Zamula highlight the action on day two of the 2021 Philadelphia Flyers Rookie Camp.

Yesterday, Morgan Frost and Wade Allison headlined day one of the 2021 Philadelphia Flyers Rookie Camp. A stellar opening to rookie camp made for a magnificent moment between the two teammates during the post-session press conference: 

Kirill Ustimenko, Brian Zanetti, and JR Avon continued their momentum from the 2021 Flyers Development Camp. Philadelphia AGM Brent Flahr was impressed by Zanetti, while Avon remained poised about making plays. Ustimenko showed glimpses of brilliance, making a desperate save against Allison in close.

Today, more from the Flyers roster worked out before the second-day session. Carter Hart and Felix Sandstrom caught early work between the pipes. Sandstrom is a goaltender who may take on the role Alex Lyon did in previous seasons. Don’t let anyone fool you; there’s profound competition between Sandstrom and Ustimenko.

Here’s what took place on day two of rookie camp:

Pre-Session NHL Workout

Similar to yesterday, the Philadelphia Flyers took to the ice before the second rookie session began. I listed ten names on day one, noting there were more there. Today, there were 22 players, per Jordan Hall. They include yesterday’s players and the following: 

  • Carter Hart
  • Felix Sandstrom
  • Elliot Desnoyers 
  • Adam Clendening

Hart is looking for a bounce-back season. His backup, Martin Jones, is local but wasn’t in goal this morning.

Desnoyers spent 2020-2021 as an alternate captain on the Halifax Mooseheads. Clendening is a transplant into the Flyers’ system. He spent nine games last season in the AHL with the Cleveland Monsters (Columbus Blue Jackets affiliate.)

Linus Sandin

Sandin has been a great teammate during camp. Whether he’s flashing his offensive skill or pressing the defensemen, his attention to detail is helping the Philadelphia Flyers rookies elevate their game.

Offensively, he and Morgan Frost looked sharp in 2v2 drills. Frost carved across the middle of the ice, finding Sandin in the high slot against Jackson van de Leest and Cooper Zech. The sequence finished with a goal off the stick of Sandin: 

Last season, Sandin agreed to a one-year entry-level contract with the Flyers. In doing so, he played 26 games, recording ten points (6G, 4A.) This season marks the last of his current deal before he’s due to become a restricted free agent. Currently, Sandin looks like a cusp RW who isn’t far away from a recall to the NHL roster, akin to Maksim Sushko in 2020-2021.

Top Defensive Prospects

In a word, Zamula showed composure on the second day of rookie camp. Corralling the puck in the corner, he spun away from Linus Sandin. Evading a forecheck to create space is what you want to see from a young defenseman, especially one who is debatably NHL ready (along with Cam York.) Following a spin move, Zamula placed a cross-ice pass on the tape of a teammate:

The implication of Zamula or York as “debatably NHL ready” leaves a sour taste in the mouths of some analysts. That’s reasonable; they both have small sample sizes with the Philadelphia Flyers. After 2021-2022, the Flyers will be scrambling to replenish their defensive unit. Zamula or York have the best opportunity to fill in if Keith Yandle doesn’t earn an extension. Expect that battle to remain relevant in the AHL this season.

Between the two, Zamula is defensively superior. York produces more at the blue line. On the left side, Philadelphia will need to replenish with a defensive defenseman after this season, which works in Zamula’s favor.

Both players know what to expect at the NHL level, making them more comfortable in their ability.

Finding Foerster

It doesn’t matter if it’s the Philadelphia Flyers 2021 Development Camp or Rookie Camp; Tyson Foerster has been electric throughout all offseason sessions.

During 2v1 drills, Foerster showed patience with the puck, sending a perfect one-timer pass to Samu Tuomaala for a goal. Tuomaala receives consistent praise for his speed, but comparably, Foerster deserves his flowers for improving his skating. He’s notably tough to knock off the puck but received criticism for not having an explosive first step. Without surprise, he’s proving his naysayers wrong in a short time.

Furthermore, Foerster showed off his rocket shot. Morgan Frost notched the assist on the play. The water bottle took a bounce on the top of the goal. Check out the action, courtesy of Jordan Hall:

Foerster is healthy. He hopes to remain with the Flyers; “hopefully I can stay with the Flyers, but if not, then hopefully Lehigh,” said Foerster.

Additionally, Tanner Laczynski is cleared and ready for the rookie games this weekend versus the New York Rangers.

Photo Credit: Alex McIntyre