[AUTHOR’S NOTE: This was written for The Broad Street Bully, a blog and podcast my friend Drew and I started based off of our mutual interest in the Philadelphia Flyers. See it on http://broadstreetbully.net.]
Whether it was through deadline deal trades or offseason signings, the Flyers have picked up some new faces. The following pieces are a quick run down of the major new signings that Flyers fans can expect to see in the lineup at the start of next season.
After the jump, this post covers: newest defenseman, Yevgeni Medvedev.
Yevgeni Medvedev’s Career Stats
To the casual Flyers fan, here is a Twitter post in length on what you can expect from Medvedev: he’s quick, he can skate, and he is solid defensively.
Sounds promising, right? Hextall thought so. Medvedev joins the Flyers next season on a one year, $3 million dollar deal.
So what is the downside? Well, for one, he’s already 32. That in itself is not the end of the world, however. Most defenseman don’t hit their prime until their early thirties (the Blackhawk’s Duncan Keith is 32). Now, relax before you start complaining that I’m comparing a KHL veteran with no NHL experience to last year’s playoff MVP. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not saying Medvedev is going to play his first season in the NHL and dazzle everyone with his skill. But I’m also not saying that he will be a total bust.
How he adapts from KHL play should determine how well he does. NHL rink size is smaller than the international size, which leaves Medvedev less room to skate. Whether or not this will be a hindrance to his mobility is yet to be seen.
What Hextall does know is that Medvedev is going to get a chance to play; as he’s one of the most experienced defenseman the Flyers currently have under contract going into the upcoming season. Getting a seasoned defenseman that can potentially effect game outcomes in a positive way, while also helping to grow the game in their defensive prospects, leaves Hextall looking smart for grabbing Medvedev from the KHL when he did.
And if he has a breakout year in his first NHL tour then there’s the possibility that Medvedev gets one or two additional years as an offer from the Flyers.
Or, Medvedev puts himself in line for a huge NHL payday with a long term deal from another team.
Eitherway, the Medvedev signing is a safe, low risk pickup for the Flyers this year. And that’s really all that matters at this point.
** Career stats pulled from http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=70874