clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Flyers are getting calls on Scott Laughton while they “grind out” an extension

New, comments

Laughton has now become the central storyline of the Flyers’ trade deadline.

NHL: MAR 23 Devils at Flyers Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Earlier this past week, Tom dove into some comments made by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman on the 31 Thoughts podcast, in which he and co-host Jeff Marek spent nearly 20 minutes talking about what’s been ailing your very own Philadelphia Flyers this season. One of the key topics of discussion was the fate of 2012 first-round pick and pending unrestricted free agent Scott Laughton, who might just have some potential suitors out in the trade market:

“I think they’ve tried to sign him. I think it’s possible, last year, when they were talking to Winnipeg about [Patrik] Laine, that Laughton was potentially around that. I will say this, contracts are hard to do right now, especially when you’re going through what Philadelphia is going through...I believe the Flyers think that that guy loves being a Flyer and wants to be a Flyer. The question is, can they get it done?

“There are a lot of teams out there, if you told them that Scott Laughton was available for a playoff run, they’re throwing themselves at a guy like him.”

That podcast was released on April 2, and last night, eight days later, Friedman had just a bit more to say during the second intermission of Hockey Night in Canada:

In Philadelphia, Scott Laughton, I think he’s been a target for a couple of teams, including potentially Toronto. However, they’ve been grinding away at it this week. The word is that Laughton wants to stay, and Philadelphia wants to keep him. We’ll see if they can close this out over the next 48 hours.

The tone and general idea of Friedman’s comments was similar to that of his comments from the week prior. Laughton is the Flyers’ highest-profile pending unrestricted free agent, teams will have some interest in a well-rounded player like him, and yet he and the Flyers seem to want to make it work if they can.

The news from Friedman that “they’ve been grinding away at it this week,” however, appears to be new. [“They” and “it”, in this case, are presumably “Scott Laughton and the Flyers” and “a contract extension”.] The subtext within the consistent references to Laughton’s desire to stay in Philadelphia is that are probably trying to get him for a little bit of a hometown discount, but you have to figure a guy who’s coming off of the two most productive offensive seasons of his career — and has always been regarded as a dependable two-way forward — will be due at least a bit of a raise from his current cap hit of $2.3 million.

The Flyers, as most teams do, look like they’re going to be facing a cap crunch for the next couple of seasons, and they’re presumably weighing the decision of how much they want to give a guy who’s given a lot to this team but may not factor in as more than a depth piece, particularly if there are good offers out there from teams who could definitely use a guy like Laughton in the playoffs.

We’ll keep our eye on this, as it appears this is now the Flyers’ biggest storyline of the trade deadline.