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Flyers re-sign Connor Bunnaman to two-year deal

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Philadelphia has locked up an RFA for a couple of seasons.

Philadelphia Flyers v Buffalo Sabres Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images

The Philadelphia Flyers are continuing to work through their depth this summer and most recently, have brought back a familiar face to keep that dearth of mid-20’s forwards active.

Announced by the team on Friday, the Flyers have re-signed center Connor Bunnaman to a two-year deal that will have a two-way salary structure for the first season to a one-way deal in the second. Other than a league-minimum NHL salary of $750,000, further financial details have not been disclosed by the club.

Bunnaman, 23, has now been within the Flyers organization for five years now after being selected in the fourth round of the 2016 NHL Draft. Due to his rookie deal sliding for one year, this is his first post-ELC contract.

Since making his Flyers debut in 2019, Bunnaman has bounced back and forth between Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia, usually being one of the first go-to call-ups for GM Chuck Fletcher to make when they need a forward. Due to his minutes being limited to bottom-six, the Guelph, Ont. native has earned just 3 points in his 39 appearances.

At least one of those points was kind of cool.

But even during his time with the Phantoms in the AHL the past two seasons, Bunnaman has only scored 11 points in 44 games — maybe it’s the factor of not being settled anywhere with an ever-changing lineup (especially during the season that happened in the middle of a pandemic) but lately he hasn’t shown any true offensive potential.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone if he starts his 2021-22 season in Lehigh Valley, trying to get as many minutes as possible. And even if some other depth forwards like Wade Allison, Tanner Laczynski, or Jackson Cates, gets calls to head to Philadelphia before he does.

Either way, it’s good to just have bodies in preparation and Bunnaman isn’t a bad one to have in his role.

Now with Bunnaman re-signed, all that the Flyers have to do in their extensive offseason to-do list is get defenseman Travis Sanheim on a new deal. Philadelphia elected to head to arbitration with the towering blueliner and that will take place on Aug. 26. Sanheim will then have a choice to choose a one or two-year deal with the salary decided by a neutral arbitrator. Everything is going to get done, with just a couple weeks remaining until training camp.