Flyers

Flyers re-sign another RFA to deserving deal at position of depth

Flyers

Another one of the Flyers' restricted free agents has signed his new deal.

Robert Hagg on Monday inked a two-year, $3.2 million contract extension that has an average annual value of $1.6 million.

The 25-year-old defenseman had an AAV of $1.15 million on his previous deal and was arbitration eligible. Both sides did not need arbitration as Hagg received an honest and modest raise on his new deal, which will set him up for unrestricted free agency ahead of the 2022-23 season.

The Flyers recently re-signed Nicolas Aube-Kubel, who was a restricted free agent, and Alex Lyon, who had an unrestricted status. Oskar Lindblom was also a pending RFA and re-signed in July.

Hagg, a stay-at-home, keep-it-simple, kill-plays defenseman, was one of the Flyers' more underrated blueliners during the 2019-20 season. He was pegged by many to be the club's seventh defenseman and ended up playing 49 of the Flyers' 69 regular-season games. The Swedish native finished as a plus-14 and was first on the team in blocked shots per 60 minutes with 6.20.

He was solid in the NHL's return-to-play 24-team tournament with three assists and 20 blocked shots over 12 games.

“He brings a lot to this team, plays the right way defensively and he’s there to block every shot he can," Kevin Hayes said in March. "We have a couple guys like that on our back end. It’s a stat that no one really cares about, but it goes a long way within this group. We know how important he is to this team. I mean, he’s a great guy, too, so it makes it that much better."

 

From Dec. 28, the team's first game after the holiday break, to the end of the regular season, Hagg had 10 points (three goals, seven assists), led Flyers defensemen with a plus-17 mark and recorded more even strength points (nine) than Ivan Provorov (eight) and Philippe Myers (five).

Offense is not Hagg's game; he is well-respected by teammates for the quiet way he goes about his job and doing the little, unglamorous things.

"I don’t know if he loves to block them, but he does it," Carter Hart said in August.

"As a goalie, you've got to love that and appreciate that, just how hard he competes; he’s an intimidating force out there. I know some guys, when they get under his skin, you don’t want to be on that other side. We’re lucky to have Bobby out there on the back end."

Hagg, who played a role in the Flyers' drastically improved goal prevention, had to steadfastly work for and keep his spot in the lineup. That will continue in 2020-21 as the Flyers have good organizational depth at the position.

The Flyers have two more restricted free agents: Myers and Nolan Patrick, who are not arbitration eligible.

The Flyers have five players set to hit unrestricted free agency: Brian Elliott, Justin Braun, Tyler Pitlick, Derek Grant and Nate Thompson.

Free agency opens Oct. 9 at noon ET.

Teams have until Oct. 7 at 5 p.m. ET to submit qualifying offers to their restricted free agents and those offers expire Oct. 18 at 5 p.m. ET.