Flyers

A video clip Scott Gordon made sure to show Travis Konecny

A video clip Scott Gordon made sure to show Travis Konecny

VOORHEES, N.J. — Scott Gordon wanted Travis Konecny to see the play — and the potential.

The Flyers' interim head coach wasn't showing Konecny his goal from last Saturday's 3-2 loss to the Flames, which was the 21-year-old's first tally since Dec. 8.

Instead, he wanted to highlight Konecny's hustle on a backcheck to break up a Calgary scoring chance and save Ivan Provorov, who coughed up the puck.

These are the types of plays that end up leading to "good-fortune goals," as Gordon puts it. What do you know, that good fortune came around later in the game when Konecny capitalized on a mistake by goalie David Rittich and buried a go-ahead, third-period goal.

Gordon remembered the backcheck and made sure to remind Konecny of it.

"I sat down with him [Sunday] and that was one of the first clips I showed him, just to say, this is being a 200-foot player, this is being a complete player, this is attention to details," Gordon said Monday after morning skate. "Tough play for Provy where the puck rolled on him as he's trying to stick handle, it gets away from him, but T.K. was aware of what the situation was and did everything he could to stop the guy from scoring and not take a penalty.

"Right there, he does something that's selfless and next thing you know, he's getting an empty-net goal with the goalie out playing the puck. You do good things on the ice and eventually you get rewarded."

Gordon picked a perfect time to praise Konecny for a play that doesn't go noticed in the box score. The 2015 first-round pick hadn't been getting the results (three assists, no goals in his previous 16 games) and this was a great moment to explain how the 200-foot game can be a constant even when the numbers aren't there.

"It was nice. As a player, you want to get some good feedback like that," Konecny said. "I've been working hard at trying to complete my game because I know lately things haven't been going the greatest for everybody, so just trying to focus on the little things and fine-tuning your game."

Konecny can be the most noticeable player on the ice and a true terror when he's going all out, in all situations. As long as he's consistent on that end, with his speed and skill evident, he's not worried about goal droughts, something Jakub Voracek told him all players go through.

"Everybody does. Everyone who's ever played has, so I'm more focused on trying to turn our year around right now and figure out what's going on," Konecny said. "As soon as that starts to turn around, everyone's individual success will kind of take care of itself. And I think that's everyone's attitude in here — no one is individualized and looking at the stat sheets or contracts or whatever it is, we're just trying to play for each other and figure out what's going to work for us."

With the Flyers in last place at the midway point of the season, they'll take some more of that good fortune.

"The good-fortune goals are goals that if you do enough of the right things, things are going to happen and I think T.K. is a perfect example of that," Gordon said. 

"That's usually how luck changes — when you consistently do things correctly and put yourself in the right spots, you'll get those bounces."

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2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule: Capitals, Hurricanes set for Game 7 clash

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2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule: Capitals, Hurricanes set for Game 7 clash

There were two Game 7 matchups Tuesday night.

On Wednesday night, we've got another one and it should be good as the defending champion Capitals try to put away the Rod Brind'Amour-led Hurricanes, who are in the playoffs for the first time since 2009.

The first-round series hasn't lacked fireworks or physicality. Game 7 should be no different.

Below is the full schedule for Day 15 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs. You can watch the entire playoffs on the networks of NBC. 

Carolina Hurricanes at Washington Capitals (tied 3-3)
Game 7, Eastern Conference first round
7:30 p.m. ET | TV: NBCSN | Live stream here

Don't lose perspective with Flyers prospect Jay O'Brien

Don't lose perspective with Flyers prospect Jay O'Brien

Updated: 5:13 p.m.

The Flyers saw both ends of the spectrum with their first-round picks from the 2018 draft.

While Joel Farabee shined at Boston University this season (see story), Jay O'Brien struggled to find his game at Providence College.

After a freshman season comprised of injuries and five points (two goals, three assists) in 25 games, it appears O'Brien's time with the Friars is over.

According to a report Tuesday by Jeff Cox of the New England Hockey Journal, O'Brien has entered the NCAA transfer portal and is expected to play for the Penticton Vees of the BCHL during the 2019-20 season. However, per separate reports, O'Brien's decision for next season is still being decided.

O'Brien, a playmaking center, will have three years of college eligibility remaining.

Now, before anyone starts debating O'Brien's future, let's remember the importance of perspective with teenage prospects. 

O'Brien was perceived as a bit of project when the Flyers' previous regime of Ron Hextall and Chris Pryor selected him 19th overall last summer. Taking O'Brien at No. 19 was viewed by many as a reach, but the Flyers' scouting staff was high on the Thayer Academy product and trusted its evaluation. The Flyers took O'Brien over other centers Joseph Veleno, Rasmus Kupari and Isac Lundestrom.

This season, Veleno put up 104 points in the QMJHL, Kupari had 33 points over 43 games in Liiga (Finnish pro league) and Lundestrom appeared in 15 games with the Ducks.

O'Brien, because of his smaller stature (5-foot-11, 174 pounds) and being drafted out of prep school, had an adjustment period playing Division I hockey (see story). Multiple injuries also didn't help his cause with the transition.

But patience with O'Brien was always going to be imperative. The Flyers drafted him on a lot of upside after taking more of a guarantee in the quick-rising Farabee five picks earlier. The 19-year-old O'Brien isn't lacking in ability or work ethic. Providence head coach Nate Leaman, who led the Friars to a national title in 2015, called O'Brien's skill set "elite."

"It takes time to learn to play at the speed, to play with the lack of space," Leaman said in January during a phone interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia (see story).

"These guys that come right from high school, it takes time and I know Philly has told us that they understand that also."

O'Brien paid little attention to pre-draft rankings last summer.

"I don't even know where I was," he said at development camp. "It doesn't mean much to me. It's not really where you get drafted, it's what you do after you get drafted."

He'll have a new path in 2019-20, another chance to prove himself. There's still plenty to like, with plenty of time.

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