Going End to End today are NBC Sports Philadelphia's Jordan Hall and Brooke Destra.
The topic: Predictions for restricted free agent forward Travis Konecny's contract.
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Let's go bridge deal, which would really behoove Konecny.
The 22-year-old hasn't quite blossomed yet, putting up back-to-back 24-goal seasons. But he clearly has 30-goal potential and his role is only going to grow with the Flyers.
A shorter deal now wouldn't allow the Flyers to sign Konecny at a long-term bargain before he reaches his full potential. Think Sean Couturier's contract as an example of that - the Flyers knew his upside and signed Couturier to a six-year, $26 million deal before the center had ever scored more than 15 goals or 40 points in a season. Now it's a steal and an incredible investment.
A bridge contract just makes sense for both sides here. The Flyers get a chance to see more from Konecny before committing long term and the 2015 first-round pick can earn himself much more with better opportunity and continued growth.
How about a three-year deal with an AAV in the $4 million range? Good value for both parties and Konecny will just be turning 25 when he can truly cash in.
Konecny has an abundance of potential but still needs to prove himself in many ways, which is why a bridge deal seems like the way to go for the 22-year-old.
There are many positives that we've seen in his three professional seasons (speed, ability to drive the net and A-plus chirping) and with a few adjustments, he's going to become a player no one wants to be matched up against.
The main things that are worrying, though, are his frequent turnovers, especially in the neutral zone, and how his performance only seems to steady when playing on a line with some of the top players on the team (Claude Giroux and Couturier).
He will be a leader eventually. It's just going to take some more time.
Konecny is a key to bringing success for the Flyers for years to come but a bridge deal now will allow him to grow without the pressure of a larger contract.
Like Jordan, I also see a three-year deal with an AAV around $3-4 million. He can grow into the player we're expecting him to be.
Let him find his confidence to push his game to new levels that he has yet to reach. Let that happen and not only will he find himself deserving of a larger contract by the time he's 25, but the Flyers will also have one of the strongest wingers in the league. Just wait and see.
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