PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMBER 21: Kevin Marshall #46 of the Philadelphia Flyers skates in his first NHL game against the Carolina Hurricanes at the Wells Fargo Center on November 21, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Kevin Marshall had his NHL opportunity in the Philadelphia Flyers organization, but in the end, he failed to stick on a depleted blue line, outgunned by Marc-Andre Bourdon and sent back to the Adirondack Phantoms.
Paul Holmgren apparently saw enough in the 10 NHL games Marshall played this season to realize he wouldn't be a contributor for the team over the long-term, as as a result, the Flyers' second round pick from the 2007 draft is headed south to the Washington Capitals.
In exchange for Marshall, the Flyers have acquired minor league forward Matt Ford. Ford, 27, was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in Round 8 of the 2004 NHL Draft, and he never signed with the organization.
He began his professional career in 2008-09 following a four-year college career at the University of Wisconsin and he's mostly been an AHL player since, although he has played 37 games in the ECHL. Ford's never played in the NHL. Not even a sniff. At age 27, it doesn't seem like he has much of a shot at that, either.
This is strictly an AHL move with little consequence on the Flyers. Marshall had some upside, but the Flyers apparently do not think it's all that high. I didn't think he was awful or anything during his time in the NHL this season -- not noticeably worse than Bourdon, at least -- but with his contract up at the end of the season, it appears as though his time was short here anyway.
We'll always remember Marshall's victory dance, but this seems like a classic case of getting something in return for a piece that would have walked for nothing in July. Hopefully Ford, also a UFA in July, can contribute to the Phantoms out a bit and add some veteran presence. He's played in Hershey so he knows all about winning in the AHL, and maybe he can bring that to Glens Falls.