Flyers Training Camp Recap, Preseason Preview

Monday, September 26, 2016
Flyers begin their preseason schedule tonight. Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey
Flyers (preseason) hockey is back tonight!

Written by: Tony Androckitis, Twitter/Facebook

The Philadelphia Flyers are set to begin their preseason schedule tonight with a pair of split squad games with the New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders, though most of the team's top players are not in action for the black and orange tonight.

The early preseason contests on the schedule give teams an idea of how much their prospects have progressed from last season and over the summer through development camp, rookie camp and now main training camp. It's time to put them to the test in game situations.

Several expected members of the 2016-17 Lehigh Valley Phantoms will wear the Flyers crest on their jersey - some for the first time. Interestingly enough, Tyrell Goulbourne's first NHL preseason game will come tonight after injuries in camp the past three years prevented him participating in previous preseason affairs.



Sunday's Scrimmage

Team Gray and Team Black took to the ice for the scrimmage, primarily Group 1 and Group 2 players from the original training camp roster, respectively.

The teams played two stanzas with a 25 minute running clock and the best news of all is that everyone who participated finished unscathed.

The lines and pairings weren't uniform throughout the scrimmage, but here are some insights/tidbits I gathered during the session.

Scoring

Team Gray defeated Team Black by a score of 2-1.

Greg Carey stuffed home the rebound of a Chris Conner drive toward the net to put Team Gray up 1-0.

Robert Hagg appeared to even the game at 1-1 for Team Black, as his shot from the point knuckled and bounced over the right pad of Carter Hart. The Flyers deemed Nicolas Aube-Kubel got a piece of Hagg's shot.

Brayden Schenn gave Team Gray the game winner working on a line with Wayne Simmonds and Jordan Weal late in the final period.

Phantoms Perspective

From a Lehigh Valley Phantoms view, there were quite a few standouts and some line combinations and defensive pairings worth taking note.

Team Gray:

Greg Carey - Mark Zengerle - Chris Conner

Chris Conner had a good showing in the scrimmage, playing like his usual self - using his speed to get to the edge and his patented drive to the net move resulted in the opening goal of the scrimmage. I was impressed with the shiftiness of his linemates as well. While it's only a scrimmage in training camp, all three are projected to be in the AHL and might have formed some early chemistry.

Tyrell Goulbourne - Radel Fazleev - Colin McDonald

These three were winning a majority of their puck battles in the corners, as expected. What's interesting to take note here is that Fazleev was paired with two physical two-way players. When asked about his possible role with the Phantoms back in Development Camp, Fazleev said he was uncertain of what his role will be. Perhaps that bottom-six role is a starting point for him this fall.

Sam Morin - Andrew MacDonald/T.J. Brennan

In talking with those at training camp, many were impressed with Morin's improved quickness and first step - something assistant coach Riley Cote specifically mentioned as areas Morin needed work in to craft his game and play to his strengths. It's an encouraging sign that the big 20-year-old defender heeded the advice of his coaching staff. Morin could be in line for a strong season with Lehigh Valley this fall. It would certainly be the next step in his development and another step closer to the NHL.

Team Black:

Taylor Leier - Corban Knight - Nicolas Aube-Kubel

Another possible potential line combination for the Phantoms this fall, this trio would be extremely entertaining to watch in the AHL this fall. Corban Knight played 20 games in the NHL last season, and could be a pivotal player for the Phantoms - a guy who can easily move up and down the lineup either down the middle or on the wing. Aube-Kubel is going to need some defensively reliable forwards paired with him at least to start, and Leier and Knight would be two of the better options in that regard.

Monday's Preseason Schedule/Rosters

The Flyers' preseason schedule kicks off tonight with a pair of road games against the New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders. Listed below are the official rosters for tonight's games. As you can see, most of the big name players will be sitting out. Michael Del Zotto (season-ending injury in 2015-16) is the only prominent NHL player playing tonight for the Flyers.

I'll be live from the PPL Center in downtown Allentown, Pa. Wednesday night as the Philadelphia Flyers host the New Jersey Devils in preseason action in the Lehigh Valley Phantoms' home rink.

Flyers @ Devils, 7 p.m.

Forwards: Scott Laughton, Andy Miele, Corban Knight, Petr Straka, Mark Zengerle, Taylor Leier, Roman Lyubimov, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Travis Konecny, Danick Martel, Connor Bunnaman and Anthony Salinitiri

Defense: Brandon Manning, T.J. Brennan, Robert Hagg, Jesper Pettersson, Philippe Myers, Ivan Provorov

Goalies: Alex Lyon and Mark Dekanich

Flyers @ Islanders, 7 p.m.

Forwards: Jordan Weal, Colin McDonald, Chris Conner, Nick Cousins, Greg Carey, Tyrell Goulbourne, Radel Fazleev, Samuel Dove-McFalls, Steven Swavely, Pascal Laberge, Carsen Twarynski and Kevin Sundher

Defense: Michael Del Zotto, Mark Alt, Will O'Neill, Sam Morin, Travis Sanheim and Reece Willcox

Goalies: Anthony Stolarz and Martin Ouellette

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