Egor Zamula to make NHL debut vs. Devils
One of the Flyers’ young defensemen in the prospect pipeline is getting a taste.
As soon as it was announced that Egor Zamula has been called up to the Philadelphia Flyers’ taxi squad, there were some contemplations whether or not this was for real.
Not too long ago, they were making use of the taxi squad to get some AHL depth skaters some time in an NHL practice and see exactly how they are handling things in terms of their development. Well, that isn’t the case for Zamula, as head coach Alain Vigneault confirmed on Monday that he will be making his NHL debut on Tuesday against the New Jersey Devils.
Lineup update: Defenseman Egor Zamula will make his @NHL debut on Tuesday. Zamula skated on a pairing with Travis Sanheim at practice today. pic.twitter.com/AO2li29P8Q— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) April 26, 2021
The 21-year-old lefty will be getting a prime opportunity next to Travis Sanheim and that’s the kind of promotion playing three really good games for the Lehigh Valley Phantoms creates. As per those AHL experts and analysts that we have on staff, Zamula has been fairly inconsistent and sometimes invisible during the beginning of this shortened minor regular season.
As soon as the Phantoms were back from their COVID outbreak, the undrafted blueliner made his mark in his first season of professional hockey.
With the Flyers’ blue line in disrepair and no hope in sight, maybe management had an increased interest in watching the Phantoms’ defenders — especially with Cam York making his debut — but they might as well try something new.
One key factor that certainly plays a massive factor is Shayne Gostisbehere being unavailable for the next week or so with a minor MCL sprain. Add that to other players like Sam Morin looking like hot trash against a horrible Devils team on Sunday and you got some desperation to try something new.
And the captain seems to like this move.
G is high on Zamula and likes his poise with the puck. Calls him "Big Z." "Very excited to see him play tomorrow." #Flyers— Sam Carchidi (@BroadStBull) April 26, 2021
With the endorsement of Claude Giroux and the only true nickname that should be awarded to one NHL defenseman, not Zdeno Chara, the table is set for some expectations to rise. But with how horrible the defense has been as of late, and the realization that Zamula has only played 17 games of hockey against non-teenagers, I would be cautious about crowning him the defensive savior.
Through those games, Big Z has five assists and we’ll see if he can stay around here for a little bit longer.