It’s another busy week for the Flyers, with four games in seven days, including another set of back-to-backs. Before the week starts, though, it’s time for our weekly check-in on the Flyers’ prospects playing in the AHL, overseas and at the junior and college levels.
In this edition, we feature a 2016 late-round draft pick who is tearing apart the Big Ten and see what the status of a pair of prospects dealing with head injuries. Let’s get at it.
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Tanner Laczynski, C, 6-1/191, Ohio State (NCAA)
We featured Laczynski in our last report, too, but the freshman center continued his scorching start to his collegiate career last week with five points in two non-conference games against Niagara. There was no shortage of scoring for No. 15 Ohio State on Friday night in a 10-2 win in which Laczynski added two assists on goals eight and nine. The next night, he registered a goal and two assists in the Buckeyes’ 6-2 win over the Purple Eagle. Through seven games, Laczynski leads Ohio State with eight assists and 11 points; he’s also second on the team with 10 penalty minutes. He’s picked up a point in all but one game this season, and currently is riding a four-game multi-point streak. It is still way too early in his development to speculate the Flyers may have a steal in Laczynski, but the 19-year-old offers some hope they might get a player with a late-round pick, something they haven’t had a ton of success with in recent years.
Pascal Laberge, RW, 6-0/174, Victoriaville (QMJHL)
Laberge remains out with a concussion he suffered Oct. 15 as the victim of an illegal check to the head that resulted in Blainville-Boisbriand defenseman Zachary Malatesta’s seven-game suspension. According to The Fourth Period’s David Strehle, Laberge is "still following concussion protocol (and) feeling better each day.” Per Strehle, there is no timetable for Laberge’s return. There was some good news on the Laberge front, however. The Flyers’ 2016 second-round pick was named to Team QMJHL for the 2016 CIBC Canada Russia Series. The Flyers now have three prospects participating in the series, with Carter Hart (Team WHL) and …
Philippe Myers, D, 6-5/209, Rouyn-Noranda (QMJHL)
Myers, too, was named to Team QMJHL. The problem is, Myers, too, has a concussion. The right-handed blueliner hasn’t played since Oct. 22 and missed all four of the Huskies’ games last week. Like Laberge, there is no timetable for Myers’ return. With the Canada-Russia Series beginning in two weeks, it’s safe to assume that neither Laberge nor Myers will be playing for Team QMJHL because concussions are so unpredictable. Still, it’s an honor for both prospects to be named to the team. Myers, who stuck around with the Flyers longer than expected, has three goals and an assist in six games this season with Rouyn-Noranda.
Jordan Weal, C, 5-10/179, Lehigh Valley (AHL)
There is no question Weal can rake in the American Hockey League; he’s done it in the past and he’s doing it again this season. At 24 years old, Weal is an older prospect, one that is in his final season before being labeled a lost clause and a career AHLer. Weal did, however, show improvement with the orange and black during training camp but ultimately fell short of nailing down a roster spot. Now with the Phantoms, Weal is on fire at Lehigh Valley. Last week, the undersized pivot collected seven points in three games. On Friday night, Weal contributed a goal and three assists in Lehigh Valley’s 5-1 win over the Hartford Wolfpack and followed it up with two goals and an assist the next night in a 5-4 loss to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Weal now leads the Phantoms with six assists and nine points in six games, well above a point-per-game rate. If a Flyer goes down with a long-term injury, Weal is a candidate to be called up.
Oskar Lindblom, LW/RW, 6-1/192, Brynäs IF (SHL)
It wouldn’t be a Future Flyers Report without checking in on Lindblom, who continued to be a point machine for Brynäs IF last week. Lindblom had back-to-back two-assist games on Tuesday and Thursday, and added another helper Saturday. He is currently on his second five-game point streak of the season, tied for the SHL lead with 10 assists and is second in the league with 15 points. Unlike Laczynski, Lindblom is further along in his development to say that it does appear like the Flyers will hit with Lindblom, an international prospect. Now is the question of how much success he has playing the North American game. He did come over at the end of last season on a tryout contract with the Phantoms and registered seven points in eight games. We'll continue to track his progress here.
• Phantoms goalie Alex Lyon continued to struggle to adjust to the professional level in his second career start Saturday night, yielding five goals for the second straight game.
• Meanwhile, Anthony Stolarz, Lyon’s competition, stopped 32 of 33 shots in Lehigh Valley’s win over Hartford, and surrendered three on 33 shots against Hersey Sunday.
• Quiet week on the stat sheet for Sam Morin, but the 6-foot-7 defenseman did get a two-minute minor for boarding on an extremely dangerous, unnecessary hit on Hershey’s Travis Boyd in the Phantoms’ 3-2 loss to the Bears. Not something you want to see. This fight, however, might be something you want to watch.
• It was a good week for German Rubtsov in the MHL. Rubtsov, the Flyers’ 2016 first-round pick, netted two goals and picked up two assists in three games last week.
• Mark Friedman had a goal in both of Bowling Green’s games last week against Miami (Ohio). He now has three goals and five points in seven games.
• Harvard goalie Merrick Madsen had a strong weekend against Arizona State, shutting the Sun Devils on Friday and stopping 24 of 26 shots Saturday, both Crimson wins.
• Carter Hart turned away 47 of 50 shots in two games last week, leading the Everett Silvertips to wins over Tri-City on Thursday and Victoria on Saturday.
• Anthony Salinitri’s point streak reached eight games last week, with four points in three games for Sarnia. Salinitri is third on the Sting with 17 points in 13 games.