Flyers

Flyers waive Matt Read to reach final roster number

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Flyers waive Matt Read to reach final roster number

The mystery behind the Flyers' final cut before Wednesday's season opener in San Jose has been revealed.

And it's a surprise.

Matt Read, a six-year veteran who has spent his entire NHL career with the Flyers, was placed on waivers Monday. If he clears, he could be assigned to AHL Lehigh Valley.

That would trim the Flyers' final roster from 24 players to the mandated 23 players.

According to NBC Sports Philadelphia's John Boruk, Read was not in attendance at a mandatory Flyers corporate event Monday morning. Sam Morin, Travis Sanheim, Robert Hagg, Nolan Patrick and Taylor Leier were.

Those five rookies will be making the trip to San Jose.

Considering general manager Ron Hextall's penchant for trusting veterans rather than rushing younger players to the NHL before they could be ready, this move was on the unexpected side.

The 31-year-old Read, who signed with the Flyers as a college free agent out of Bemidji State prior to the 2011-12 season, has scored 86 goals and added 100 assists for 186 points in 418 games in an orange and black sweater. He also has four goals and four assists in 24 career playoff games.

He burst onto the scene and was a key component of Flyers teams from 2011-14, when he scored 57 goals during that stretch. His best season was his rookie year when he posted career highs in goals (24), assists (23) and points (47), all while playing substantial roles on both the Flyers' power-play and penalty-kill units.

Things started to go downhill in 2014-15 for Read. Known at the time for his speed, he suffered a high-ankle sprain at the start of the season and never truly rediscovered his burst. In the last three seasons, starting with 2014-15, Read has scored just 29 goals and found himself as a healthy scratch on more than one occasion.

Long story short, Read became expendable.

The 30 other NHL teams now have a chance to claim Read and take on his cap hit of $3.625 million for the rest of this season. His contract ends after this year.

If he goes unclaimed, Read could be assigned to Lehigh Valley, where he would provide the Flyers $1.025 million in cap relief. If that's the case, he still would count for $2.6 million on the Flyers' cap. It would be similar to the situation with Andrew MacDonald two seasons ago. MacDonald was eventually called up later in the season, and Read certainly could be this season.

If Read were to be stashed with the Phantoms, the Flyers would have approximately $2.424 million in cap space at this very moment, according to CapFriendly.com.

As for who remains on the team right now, this move likely means the 23-year-old Leier and 23-year-old Scott Laughton will take over the roles Read fit into with the chance to advance up the lineup.

Flyers call up Danick Martel, Samuel Morin

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Flyers call up Danick Martel, Samuel Morin

Mired in a five-game losing streak and in last place in the Metropolitan Division, the Flyers on Wednesday recalled defenseman Samuel Morin and forward Danick Martel from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

Both players are expected to be in the lineup Wednesday against the Islanders in New York. In corresponding moves, the Flyers sent forward Matt Read, who cleared waivers Tuesday, and defenseman Mark Alt to the Phantoms.

The 22-year-old Martel has been on fire with the Phantoms. He leads the AHL with 14 goals in 17 games this season, including a hat trick in the season opener to go along with a six-game scoring streak.

“He’s taken a step this year, for sure,” Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said Tuesday. “He’s been a good player the last couple of years, but this year, he’s clearly taken a step. He’s a dangerous player when he’s on the ice. That’s a good thing. One game in Hershey he must have had six or seven chances. We’re happy with Danick.”

Morin started the season on the Flyers' roster and remained through their four-game road trip. He suffered an injury in an Oct. 28th game against Hartford and tried to play through it in the event he would be called up to rejoin the Flyers. Morin returned to the Phantoms' lineup last week.

“Mark has played well for us,” Hextall said before Tuesday's 5-2 loss to Vancouver. “We like Sam. We kept him on the opening road trip. People, I hope, know what we think of him. He certainly knows what we think of him and right now, he’s playing 20-plus minutes. That’s where he’s at.”

Wednesday’s game at the Barclays Center could mark the first time the Flyers have played much-heralded defensive prospects Travis Sanheim, Robert Hagg and Morin in the same regular season game.

“It’s certainly not a perfect world, but as you get injured, you say, we don’t live in a perfect world,” Hextall said. “Is it necessarily what we want? No, not really. We’ve got five young guys, two last year that are pretty big pieces. We’re pretty young right now with some pretty important players. In saying that if a young guy’s ready to play and he’s our best option then that’s what we’re going to go with.”

Best of NHL: Vladimir Tarasenko records 4 points as Blues rip Oilers

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Best of NHL: Vladimir Tarasenko records 4 points as Blues rip Oilers

ST. LOUIS -- Vladimir Tarasenko had two goals and two assists and got in a rare fight Tuesday night, helping the St. Louis Blues to an 8-3 victory over the Edmonton Oilers.

Brayden Schenn also had two goals and two assists, and Jake Allen stopped 26 shots for the NHL-leading Blues.

Tarasenko's fight came in the second period. In just the third scrap of his six-year career, Tarasenko tangled with Matt Benning and landed a solid right hand much to the crowd's delight.

Tarasenko was reacting to Benning's near-collision with Schenn that was almost a knee-on-knee hit.

It was Tarasenko's second career Gordie Howe hat trick -- a goal, an assist and a fight in the same game. The other one came on Nov. 13, 2014, against Nashville.

St. Louis (16-5-1) scored two goals in each of the first two periods before adding four in a wide-open third.

Tarasenko got his 11th goal 3:16 into the first period on two deflections. Shooting from the slot, he scored when his shot hit Connor McDavid's stick and then Adam Larsson's stick for a 1-0 lead.

Tarasenko has 14 points in his last 13 games (nine goals, five assists) against the Oilers (see full recap).

Stars rally for home win over Canadiens
DALLAS -- Devin Shore and Jason Spezza scored 59 seconds apart late in the second period to lift the Dallas Stars over the Montreal Canadiens 3-1 on Tuesday night.

Shore had no goals in the first 19 games this season, but scored for the second straight game to tie it 1-all at 18:22 of the second. Spezza, who also has scored in consecutive games after netting only one goal in the first 19, put in a rebound just less than a minute later.

Shore had an assist on Spezza's goal. So did Tyler Seguin, who scored into an empty net with 27 seconds to play.

Ben Bishop made 29 saves for Dallas on his 31st birthday. He allowed only a power-play goal by Brendan Gallagher at 12:04 of the second. Gallagher scored on a rebound after Charles Hudon sent a slap shot from the blue line.

After that, the Stars killed off all three Montreal power plays in the third period.

Canadiens goalie Charlie Lindgren had 26 saves.

Neither team scored in the first period. The best chance came with 2:15 remaining, when Mattias Janmark skated in alone on Lindgren, who stopped the shot with his glove and smothered the puck on the ice.

Montreal had a 4-on-3 power play to end the first period and start the second. The Stars killed off that penalty and finished 4 for 5 on the penalty kill.

The Canadiens had a scoring chance 4 minutes into the second when Brandon Davidson's wrist shot trickled past Bishop. Gemel Smith knocked the loose puck out of the crease for the Stars.

Gallagher had two close-in chances on rebounds after Hudon's shot and poked the second into the net for the game's first goal (see full recap).