Up next for Flyers prospect Cooper Marody, the NCAA Tournament

Photo: Zack Hill/Flyers

Up next for Flyers prospect Cooper Marody, the NCAA Tournament

Before this week begins, it’s time for our weekly check-in on the Flyers’ prospects.

Cooper Marody, C, 21, 6-1/185, Michigan (NCAA)
Marody did all he could, but it wasn’t enough to send Michigan to the Big Ten title game.

Still, the No. 11-ranked Wolverines are a near lock for the NCAA Tournament.

Saturday, Marody potted two goals against No. 6 Ohio State, but Michigan fell, 3-2, in overtime.

The junior leads Michigan with 32 assists and 46 points in 37 games. His 14 goals are second on the Wolverines. Nationally, Marody’s 32 helpers are second-most and his 46 points are tied for seventh.

Pascal Laberge, C, 19, 6-1/162, Quebec (QMJHL)
Make it eight straight for Laberge.

Laberge extended his point streak to eight games last week, adding two assists Thursday and a goal and an assist Friday.

During his streak, Laberge has collected five goals and 13 points. Following a trade to Quebec, Laberge has started to find the consistency that’s been missing over the past two seasons.

In his last 27 games, Laberge has 11 goals and 15 assists — he was pointless in his first three games with the Remparts. On the season, Laberge has 17 goals and 46 points.

Morgan Frost, C, 18, 5-11/172, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL)
With the OHL season winding down, time is running out for Frost to regain the scoring lead.

But it’s still possible.

Frost’s point streak reached 11 games last week. During this streak, he has 11 assists and 19 points. In 64 games, Frost has 40 goals (fourth), 67 assists (second) and 107 points (second).

Not only does Frost’s plus-68 rating lead the OHL but it also leads all of the CHL.

The centerman trails Barrie’s Aaron Luchuk (110 points) for the OHL scoring lead.

Quick Hits
• OSU’s Tanner Laczynski picked up the primary assist on Matthew Weis’ OT winner Saturday.

The Buckeyes will face No. 5 Notre Dame Saturday in the Big Ten championship game.

• Isaac Ratcliffe had a goal and an assist in three games for Guelph, and while he did not score on this breakaway Saturday, he did flash some silky hands.

• Matthew Strome had a two-goal game Saturday vs. Niagara. He leads Hamilton with 37 goals.

• German Rubtsov is working with a point streak of his own, as the 2016 first-round pick had a goal and two assists in three games. He has seven points during his five-game point streak.

• Carter Hart’s ridiculous 2017-18 season continued. He stopped 62 of 66 shots in two games. His six-game win streak ended Sunday night with a 2-0 loss.

• Phantoms center Mikhail Vorobyev added a goal and two more assists. He has four assists and seven points in his past six games.

• Owen Sound’s Maksim Sushko tallied his 30th goal. Four of the Flyers’ 2017 draft picks have reached the 30-goal mark this season. Sushko joins Frost, Strome and Ratcliffe in that club.

Oskar Lindblom quiets Flyers’ chirps in weekend of firsts

Oskar Lindblom quiets Flyers’ chirps in weekend of firsts

If there was an NHL handbook on how to score goals in the most competitive hockey league in the world, you would have thought Oskar Lindblom would have read it forward and backward, on the charter to the Flyers' next road game and at night before bedtime.

From effort to playing at both ends of the ice, Lindblom had done everything to score a goal, except actually score one.

Prior to Saturday’s game against Carolina, Lindblom had played his first 12 games without registering a single point and it was starting to become a source of playful dissing and mockery in the Flyers' locker room.

“Teammates keep him loose,” head coach Dave Hakstol said. “I think Alex Lyon was giving him the gears. I think Alex should have had an assist last night (in Carolina). I don’t know if he was credited with one or not, but I think Alex was chirping (Oskar) about having more points per game than he did, and that’s what guys do.”

However, the official scoresheet from the 4-2 win in Carolina had Lindblom credited with his first NHL assist and Lyon still looking for one. Prior to that, the zeroes next to Lindblom’s game were starting to add up and Hakstol sensed the 21-year-old rookie was taking notice.  

“I don’t remember the game last week, but he had a great opportunity off a rebound at net front,” Hakstol said. “That was the first time I saw a little bit of frustration creep in where he let it show. Oskar is a good offensive player. He wants to help by doing his part offensively, but I think what he just continued to concentrate on is just playing good hockey.”

Sunday that first goal finally arrived in the form of a snapshot that beat Capitals goaltender Philipp Grubauer up high. It gave the Flyers a lead they never relinquished in a 6-3 win over Washington.

“I don’t want to think about it anymore,” Lindblom said. “Got the first one today and it was a huge one in the game so it was good.”

And with that, the Swede slipped on the Ric Flair victory robe for the first time, handed down from the Finnish Valtteri Filppula, who was presented the feather-laced garment the night before in Carolina. 

Prior to that, the only thing Lindblom had received was encouragement and support from his teammates who knew his time would eventually come. With an easy-going smile and a personality to match, Lindblom’s fellow Flyers couldn’t help but root for him. 

“We’re all happy for him," Travis Konecny said. “It’s been paying off for him. He deserves it. He works hard at both ends of the ice. I’m personally happy for him.

“He’s got that offensive skill that’s far and few between that a lot of guys don’t have. He just has a knack around the net, he’s always around the puck. We all knew it was coming sooner or later.”

Apparently, everyone seemed to know and especially Jake Voracek, who’s been assisting in every way possible.

“He talks to me a lot,” Lindblom said. “He tried to calm me down a little bit. It’s good for me.”

Flyers cap off crucial weekend with win over Washington

Flyers cap off crucial weekend with win over Washington


A three-goal second period highlighted by Oskar Lindblom's first career NHL goal propelled the Flyers past the Capitals, 6-3, Sunday night at the Wells Fargo Center.

Lindblom's first career goal came one night after picking up his first NHL point, an assist in Carolina.

The Flyers have regained their scoring touch with 13 goals over their last three games after managing just 11 in the five previous games.

Claude Giroux picked up an assist, tying him with Eric Lindros for fifth place on the franchise’s all-time scoring list.

Petr Mrazek stopped 25 shots, winning his fifth game since joining the Flyers. If the Flyers reach the postseason, then the conditional pick to Detroit would become a third-round selection.

In a potential first-round playoff preview, the Flyers won their season series against the Capitals, improving to 3-1-0.

• The Flyers struck first after winning a key offensive-zone faceoff. Giroux pushed the puck behind him to Shayne Gostisbehere, who ripped a perfectly placed slapper about two feet off the ice, forcing Philipp Grubauer to change the angle of his glove.

• Alex Ovechkin can sneak up on you at a moment’s notice and he doesn’t always need to uncork that 100-mph slap shot as evidenced by his 43rd goal of the season. Ovechkin snuck behind the Flyers' defense and redirected a puck past Mrazek. It was just his second goal in his last eight games against the Flyers, and he was unnoticeable until that moment.

• The Flyers quickly responded just 3 minutes, 11 seconds after Ovechkin's goal. In his 14th game, Lindblom ripped a shot high blocker side from the right circle. Credit Lindblom for applying a good forecheck that led to Michal Kempny’s errant pass that led to a 2-1 Flyers lead.

“The kid is getting some confidence right now and you can really tell,” Gostisbehere said. “He’s really going and Jake’s (Voracek) been really building him up there.”

• Interesting to see rookie Robert Hagg paired with Radko Gudas in his first game back from injury. I expected Hagg to be back with Andrew MacDonald, who he’s been with for much of the season. For the most part, Hagg looked good with Gudas, although he pinched and no forward picked him up on the back side leading to another Capitals odd-man rush. 

• Sean Couturier can’t buy a goal right now. He’s been stuck on 29 goals for over a month and he had a pair of prime chances in the same sequence Sunday. His first attempt came on a backhand pass from MacDonald that he tried to slide under Grubauer’s five hole. However, over the past three games he’s been contributing offensively with an assist in all three games. I feel it’s only a matter of time before Couturier gets No. 30.   

• The Flyers' three-goal second period was one of the best all around 20 minutes in a while. Constant pressure offensively with a flurry of prime scoring chances. They were also able to eliminate some of the defensive breakdowns from the first period as Mrazek didn’t have to produce any top-notch saves.

• Coming off a disappointing game in Carolina, Gostisbehere was bumped off the puck at the Caps' blue line and as he stumbled to the ice, it led to a 3-on-2 and a nice sprawling save from Mrazek to keep the game scoreless. If you’ve watched him closely, Ghost’s performance has dipped a little over the past several games.