NEWARK -- The NHL's offseason officially kicks off at 3 p.m. today when the Flyers do something completely insane, likely trading away Claude Giroux and their first round pick for a seventh rounder in 2018. Ed Snider and and the Flyers brass rode up the Turnpike on a party bus, where they no doubt discussed strategy in great detail and determined that the only course of action is to blow it all to hell.
No, seriously though -- the Flyers are one team everybody expects craziness out of today at the draft, and that very well may happen. Holmgren likely has a lot of his sleeve right now and Draft day is when all of it always comes together. We've seen it before and let's hope that when the dust settles at the end of the day, the Flyers are positioned as a better hockey team.
Oh, by the way - they're also set to make some actual draft picks today too, beginning with the No. 11 overall pick. It seems clear that they'll pick a defenseman with that selection, and Rasmus Ristolainen or Darnell Nurse seem to be the clearest targets, although there are several other defensive prospects that they could view favorably as well. On the flip side, the Flyers mentality has always been to draft the best player available, regardless of position and organizational need. That, and they just flat out don't draft many defensemen early in the draft.
If Holmgren holds on to the 11th pick, it's not necessarily all that clear which direction the team will go.
Here's a full list of the picks the Flyers have on Sunday at the Draft:
77. Pittsburgh (from Min-Phi-Dal)
102. Ottawa (from Phi.-TB)
103. Los Angeles (from Phx-CBJ-Phi.)
The festivities begin at 3 p.m., live from Newark on NBC Sports Network. NBCSN will simulcast TSN's coverage of the draft until around 8 p.m. Sunday, when NHL Network will take over for the later rounds.