One of the Flyers' storylines of the summer that remains unanswered as training camp is now two weeks away is Wayne Simmonds' contract status.
Simmonds is entering the final season of his six-year, $23.85 million contract extension that he signed Aug. 16, 2012, and is eligible to sign an extension with the Flyers.
Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said multiple times he would like to extend Simmonds, who turned 30 on Sunday, but we haven't heard much from the player since his exit interview in April (see story).
That changed Wednesday.
"I think they've had preliminary talks," Simmonds told reporters in Toronto, "but it is what it is at this point. I got to get healthy first and foremost and show that I am the player that I was two years ago.
"For being injured, I didn't have a bad season last year, but it's still not to the best of my ability. So when we continue to talk, we continue to talk. It is what it is right now."
With training camp 16 days away, the clock is nearing midnight if the Flyers and Simmonds wanted to get something done before the season gets underway.
Obviously, they can agree to an extension at any point during the regular season, but Hextall doesn't have an extensive history re-signing players in-season.
Hextall did sign Pierre-Edouard Bellemare to a two-year extension in March of the 2015-16 season, so it's not totally out of his M.O. But you'd think they would want to hammer one out before the season gets rolling.
Simmonds has plenty of motivation this season outside of his next contract (see story). He said Wednesday that his contract status will not change the way he'll play.
"I don't think it's going to change much for me," Simmonds said. "I'm going to be the same player I always am, so it's not going to have much barring.
"I've played 10 years in this league. I've put together some pretty good years, so I don't think I have much to prove other than being the player that I am."