Flyers

One Flyer was reportedly a hot trade target, but Chuck Fletcher shut it down

One Flyer was reportedly a hot trade target, but Chuck Fletcher shut it down

The suddenly-ascendant Flyers pieced together a somewhat busy trade deadline, acquiring a pair of depth forwards in Derek Grant and Nate Thompson to pad a playoff run, but things could've been much busier if rival executives had their way Monday.

One young Flyers player not named Shayne Gostisbehere was attracting a lot of attention as general managers circled the wagons before the deadline, according to a report from Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman.

That player? Scott Laughton:

Another player I heard a lot of teams liked: Philadelphia’s Scott Laughton.

'Chuck (Fletcher) couldn’t hang up fast enough,' another exec joked.

That's a great quote. I can see Fletcher laughing to himself, and quietly hitting "end call," when Laughton's name came up.

And it makes plenty of sense for Fletcher to shut down Laughton talks, on two fronts — both of which should excite Flyers fans.

For one, Fletcher avoiding temptation at the deadline means he has his eyes on the postseason prize. The Flyers, after Tuesday night's win (see story), are just five points behind Metro-leading Washington, with 19 games left before the playoffs. It would take a serious meltdown to miss the postseason, and it seems Fletcher feels like the Flyers can make noise in April (and May, and maybe even June?) so he stood pat.

Also, and this is probably a little more obvious: Laughton has turned into a young, sought-after talent in the eyes of league execs this season.

It's no secret that the 2019-20 season has been the best of Laughton's young career. He's already tied his career high in goals with 12, he's averaging a point every two games, and he's just 25 years old. The hard-nosed 2012 first-round pick is officially coming into his own this year, and he's still under contract through the end of the 2020-21 season. Really, it's an ideal development for the Flyers.

Is Laughton currently the kind of player who defines your team? Not just yet.

But he's become the kind of player other teams want, which is always a good sign.

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Scott Laughton says thank you to those 'putting their lives on the line' during coronavirus outbreak

Scott Laughton says thank you to those 'putting their lives on the line' during coronavirus outbreak

Just like his Flyers teammates, Scott Laughton is staying busy during the suspension of the 2019-20 season amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The 25-year-old forward is in Philadelphia keeping up with personal workouts, including a little bit of yoga with his girlfriend.

Aside from physical fitness, Laughton also dusted off his Xbox and depleted Claude Giroux's confidence in FIFA.

“I just wanted to say, I haven’t picked up an Xbox since junior [hockey]," Laughton said Monday in a video interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia's Taryn Hatcher. "Started playing a little bit during the break, G asked if we wanted to play twice, I mopped him up a little bit and beat him.

"Other than that, I actually picked up a book the other day, started reading a little bit. Not much, watching different shows, binge-watched 'Tiger King.'"

The 2019-20 Flyers are a tight-knit group, which has helped spearhead the team's resurgence after a letdown 2018-19 campaign.

"Everybody’s accepting of their role and doing what is asked of them and doing it with a smile on their face," Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher said Monday on a conference call. "I think that’s why this group is so close and we were having the success that we were having at the end of the year."

Prior to the league's stoppage on March 12, the Flyers had won nine of their last 10 games and were 19-6-1 since Jan. 8, a stretch in which they were tied with the Bruins for the NHL's most points at 39. With 13 games left on their schedule, the Flyers are one point behind the Metropolitan Division-leading Capitals and own the league's sixth-most points at 89.

Understandably, Flyers teammates are buzzing in the group chat during this period of separation.

“I think guys have been writing in the chat a lot, just trying to keep it light," Laughton said. "This is a tough time for everyone, just trying to stay in touch and see what’s going on in the league and what’s going to happen. I think guys are pretty curious about it, especially the way we were playing and going into it.”

As Laughton noted, this is a tough time for everyone. He's appreciative of all those in crucial roles, risking their health for others.

“Philly and everyone around the world have come together at this time," Laughton said. "At the front of it are the healthcare workers and everyone that’s working in the grocery stores and at different stores that you need to get essentials at, so a big thank you to all of them for doing all that for us and putting their lives on the line. It’s been a really special time to see these people put in their work and make sure everyone is healthy and safe.”

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Flyers Talk podcast: What if Flyers jumped right into NHL playoffs?

Flyers Talk podcast: What if Flyers jumped right into NHL playoffs?

On the latest Flyers Talk podcast, NBC Sports Philadelphia's Katie Emmer, Brooke Destra and Jordan Hall discuss the potential of the NHL playoffs and the team's position.

From the possible matchup and how the Flyers are adjusting, let's dive in:

1:20 — Get to know Destra's background!

3:15 — Will the NHL jump right into the playoffs?

9:50 — Let's look at the Flyers' potential matchup

15:25 — Should the Flyers worry about any scenario?

18:30 — Get to know Tanner Laczynski and Wade Allison

25:20 — Fletcher on the Flyers' adjustments during this time

32:20 — Give Chuck Fletcher and Alain Vigneault credit; excitement ahead

37:25 — OK, let's talk some shows!

40:30 — Meet the president of the Gritty committee

Subscribe and rate Flyers Talk: Apple Podcasts | Google Play | Spotify | Stitcher | Art19 | YouTube

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

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