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Flyers sign Scott Laughton to extension

One of the key RFA’s is done as the Flyers get their utility knife locked up for the next two years.

Philadelphia Flyers v Dallas Stars Photo by Glenn James/NHLI via Getty Images

The Flyers have taken care of one of their pending restricted free agents.

Scott Laughton has been signed to a two-year contract extension worth an average annual value of $2.3 million, according to newly minted Flyers President and General Manager Chuck Fletcher.

Laughton, 25, set career-highs in goals with 12 and points with 32 while playing in all 82 games for the Flyers in 2018-19. The 20th overall pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft signs his deal to leave two key Flyers RFA’s: Ivan Provorov and Travis Konecny.

After an uneventful start to his NHL career through 102 games, the Flyers asked Laughton to remake his game while spending all but two games in Lehigh Valley during the 2016-17 season. They asked him to mold himself into more of a traditional bottom six, shutdown center and Laughton responded with a more defensively sound game in the two years since while being one of the few bright spots among the Flyers’ bottom six in that span. He won’t quite ever live up to first-round billing, but he’s a useful piece in the NHL lineup that can play center or wing, kill penalties and play up in the lineup without operating at a total loss.

With Kevin Hayes solidifying the Flyers’ top six forward group, Fletcher has turned his attention to the bottom six with the acquisition of Tyler Pitlick and now the re-signing of Laughton in addition to the midseason extension for Michael Raffl. One spot that Fletcher hasn’t yet filled is the hole on the wing of the third line, but that’s also a spot that could be being left open to be won in camp, with a slew of options to choose from.

The signing leaves the Flyers just under $13 million in cap space as of this writing with CapFriendly listing the team with just under $15 million in projected cap space. That leaves room for Fletcher to get to work finishing up deals for both Provorov and Konecny. The question is whether or not the Flyers will be looking at short-term “bridge” deals like the one Laughton just got or whether or not they go long-term with either or both.