The Philadelphia Flyers’ U-23 pipeline is ranked 19th in the NHL.
Before 2021-2022, Philadelphia was ranked 17th. For a team that finished with the fourth worst record during the 2021-2022 season, a pipeline ranked 19th doesn’t help decrease the odds stacked against them. These prospects do have a ton of potential to offer and could perform better than their 2022-2023 preseason rankings.
Stability goes a long way into the development of these players. John Tortorella will be the third head coach of the Flyers between the start of last season and the upcoming.
Some of these prospects made an impact in a few stints on the NHL roster. Others made their impressions on the World Junior stage. Overall, there are more than a few prospects in review to genuinely be excited about.
Farabee, Gauthier, and York
Joel Farabee, Cutter Gauthier, and Cam York are the faces of the Flyers’ U-23 group. They all were first-round selections by the Flyers and each was developed within the USNTDP. The Flyers and the USNTDP are growing a connection.
Farabee, 22, has played in 170 games with the Flyers during his three-year career scoring 93 points (45G, 48A). Yet to play a full 82-game season in the NHL, Farabee is expected to miss the beginning of 2022-2023. He underwent disc replacement surgery in June and the recovery timeline is between 3-4 months.
Farabee already plays a top-six role in Philadelphia and is a key part of the future. He’s signed through 2027-2028.
Gauthier, 18, will be playing at Boston College during 2022-2023. Drafted fifth overall in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft, Gauthier brings versatility and upside with him to Philadelphia. He mainly plays on the left wing but will be focusing on playing as a center with Boston College.
Gauthier is 6’3″ and 200lbs. He has speed, size, and a deadly shot. Gauthier has high-end top-six potential in Philadelphia and can develop into a game-changing forward.
York, 21, adds more talent to a deep left defensive core. He’s proven his capability of being a full-time NHL player. York played in 30 games with the Flyers during 2021-2022 and scored 10 points (3G, 7A). He saw playing time with Provorov and complemented his game.
York improves the powerplay, as he scored one goal and tallied three assists on the unit. He will be battling for a roster spot during training camp in September and the odds look to be in his favor. York has the potential to grow into a top-four defenseman in Philadelphia.
Flyers in the World Junior Championships
Emil Andrae, Tyson Foerster, and Elliot Desnoyers all played in the 2022 World Junior Championships and earned hardware. Andrae and Team Sweden earned bronze, while Foerster and Desnoyers won gold with Canada.
Andrae, 20, is another left defenseman and shined throughout the tournament. He finished with eight points (4G, 4A) in seven games. His stock within the Flyers’ system rose significantly throughout the WJC. Andrae has drawn comparisons to former Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen.
Foerster, 20, scored six points (3G, 3A) in seven games as Canada won gold. His shoot-first mentality was on display all tournament, as he had 20 shots on goal. He missed most of 2021-2022 due to injuries and the WJC was the perfect stage for him to prove his abilities.
Foerster played in 24 games with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms during 2020-2021 and scored 17 points (10G, 7A). During 2021-2022, he played in nine games before being injured and scored three points (2G, 1A). He’s proven that he can compete and the AHL level.
With how he performed during the WJC and Farabee unlikely to be ready for the start of the season, Foerster could earn himself a spot on the Flyers’ opening night roster out of training camp.
Desnoyers, 20, finished with one assist during the WJC. He’s a center who can play a complete two-hundred-foot game. His play during the tournament was more visible on the ice rather than on the score sheet.
Desnoyers dominated the QMJHL in 2021-2022 with the Halifax Mooseheads. Scoring 88 points (42G, 46A) in 61 games, Desnoyers has steadily improved his stock over the past two seasons. Drafted in the fifth round in 2020, Desnoyers appears to be a steal for the Flyers.
Others making an impression
Bobby Brink played in 10 games with the Flyers towards the end of 2021-2022. He tallied four assists during those games and showcased his playmaking abilities. Following a season where he finished as the NCAA leading scorer, a Hobey Baker Award finalist, and a National Champion with the University of Denver, Brink will now miss the next few months due to surgery for a torn labrum in his hip.
Brink, 21, was expected to be in contention for a roster spot during training camp. His recovery timeline points to a potential January return.
Zayde Wisdom missed time during 2021-2022 due to injury but his return was positive. Playing for the Kingston Frontenacs in the OHL, he scored 38 points (9G, 29A) in 43 regular season games, and then 15 points (4G, 11A) in 11 playoff games.
Wisdom, 20, played in 28 games with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in 2020-2021 and scored 18 points (7G, 11A). He’s an exciting prospect as he plays a high-energy game and can find himself on the score sheet. He has the potential to develop into a middle-six forward on the Flyers.
Yegor Zamula played in 10 games with the Flyers during 2021-2022. A left defenseman, Zamula saw a portion of time paired with Provorov. Zamula is flexible in the lineup as he can play on the right defensive side.
Zamula, 22, has size being 6’3″ but he lacks strength. He kept up with the NHL pace during his ten-game stint and showed he can slot into the third pair. His strengths include a long reach and puck handling skills, as he can break up plays and create counterattacks. Zamula will be another player in contention for a roster spot during training camp.
(Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire)