The Philadelphia Flyers defense encompasses a plethora of talent that is capable of making a playoff run. This was shown in the determination they had in their first-round playoff match up with the Washington Capitals last season. Although the Flyers did end up with a first-round exit they took the series to six games and have only built on that taste of postseason hockey this season. They may have a 10-10-3 record and sit two points out of a wild card spot, but come March it should come as little surprise if this team is in a playoff position.
Future Has Arrived for Philadelphia Flyers Defense
It may be more commonly referred to in football than hockey, but it is said that defense wins championships. The Flyers are not Stanley Cup contenders yet, but if this mindset holds true, they are putting together one of the best defensive groups in the league. Three of Flyers defense key players have combined for a mere 209 games at the NHL level. Mark Streit is the only Flyers defenceman to have played over 500 career games. The group may be inexperienced, but they are riddled with talent and full of potential.
Shayne Gostisbehere is quickly establishing himself as one of the best defenceman in the league. Don’t be surprised to see this player in the top ten defensemen list sooner rather than later. This season he has tallied eleven points, and is capitalising on a dominant rookie season. His 46 points in 64 games last season had him finish second in Calder voting, and in 88 career games he has 57 points with 21 goals. Drafted 78th overall in 2012, Gostisbehere has emerged as the cornerstone for the Flyers defense going forward.
Another player to key an eye on the Flyers defense is Brandon Manning. The 26-year-old has only played 98 career games and has taken his game to a new level to start the 2016-17 season. He is a prime example of what determination, hard work, and getting a chance can do, having never been drafted.
The seventh overall pick in the 2015 draft, Ivan Provorov, is also having a great start to his rookie season with the Flyers defense. He has suited up for all 23 games, and has tallied nine points in the process. When a team selects you as a top-ten pick, they have high aspirations. Although the sample size is small, early indications show that Provorov will work nicely in their system.
This trio also has an advantage at the start of their NHL career. That advantage comes in the form of Streit. The veteran defenseman is showing that at 38 years old he can still be a contributing factor. He has registered 12 points to start the season. The former 262nd overall pick has put together a commendable career which has seen him reach 419 points, 325 assists, in 739 games. Not all veterans like to take on the role of mentor, but players like Gostisbehere, Manning, and Provorov, can get an edge at the early stages of their career by simple being sponges to the veteran players that have found success before them.
The Philadelphia Flyers are primed to win, and if they can keep the defensive group they have intact, the city of Philly will once again be able to witness success.