Breaking: Flyers closing in on talks to sign 5’11”, 174 lbs underrated free agent

Breaking: Flyers closing in on talks to sign 5’11”, 174 lbs underrated free agent

Without an entry-level contract, Minnesota Wild prospect Servac Petrovsky will become an NHL free agency at 5 p.m. EST on Saturday. Petrovsky claimed that the Wild were unable to furnish him with a contract offer. Despite his halted OHL production since his name was called in the 2022 NHL Draft, the 5-foot-10 forward is someone the Philadelphia Flyers should toss a dart at.

Petrovsky was rated 92nd by Eliteprospects prior to the 2022 draft, however he was not selected until falling to the Wild in the sixth round, 185th overall. The 19-year-old star is not the same buy-low guy Ryan Poehling was for the Flyers a year ago, but for a teenage prospect with high-level potential, why not?

The Flyers have no projected centers in their prospect pool, except for Denver Barkey, who was selected 95th overall in the 2023 NHL Draft. If Petrovsky accepts a contract offer and joins the Flyers, he will likely be no worse than the choices they already have playing in the AHL for the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

Elliott Desnoyers, who made his NHL debut and had 44 points in 65 AHL games last year, completed this season with only six goals and 22 points in 63 games. He was, at times, a healthy scratch as a result of his inconsistent behavior. Jon-Randall Avon also had a terrible first season with the Phantoms, with only nine goals and 18 points in 65 regular-season games.

Those two aren’t exactly reliable players for the Flyers, so adding some competition in the shape of Petrovsky could help them get over the hump in the face of pressure.

Petrovsky’s Eliteprospects draft year scouting report states that his defense provides a clear path to the NHL. He’s a pro-level defender because he scans constantly, positions himself intelligently, and keeps his knees bent and ready to accelerate. Adding some physicality will improve Petrovsky’s chances of becoming a defensive impact player in the NHL. If he succeeds, he has the potential to become a fourth-liner who prioritizes defense. Increasing his deceptiveness and crossover frequency could get him a third-line role.”

Petrovsky’s style is all about responsibility and risk-aversion, which is perhaps why his output has stayed relatively consistent throughout his three seasons with the Owen Sound Attack. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. If nothing else, Petrovsky’s intelligence and determination to defend will endear him to the Flyers and Phantoms’ coaching staffs.

Petrovsky led Slovakia at the World Junior Championships with five goals, four assists, and nine points in five games, tying with Montreal Canadiens first-round choice Filip Mesar for the team lead. Petrovsky was even called up to Slovakia’s senior team, where he played three games and assisted once this year.

Not bad for a teenager.

If the Flyers are able to secure Petrovsky’s signature and pry him away from other NHL teams, it would be a smashing success.

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