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Scott Laughton, Flyers agree to 2-year, $4.6 million contract

Scott Laughton, Flyers agree to 2-year, $4.6 million contract

No arbitration for Scott Laughton and the Flyers. Not even close.

Laughton and the Flyers on Friday agreed to a two-year contract extension with an average annual value of $2.3 million.

The restricted free agent and the club had an arbitration hearing scheduled for July 30. It's not surpring they never got to it.

This is a good deal for Laughton — and deserved. It's an honest contract for a player that has paid his dues. The 25-year-old's previous contract was a two-year, $1.925 million deal with an average annual value of $962,500.

The 2012 first-round pick has found his niche in the NHL, becoming one of the Flyers' more vital depth pieces. During 2018-19, Laughton delivered career highs in goals (12), assists (20), games (82) and ice time per game (14:51). Just as importantly, Laughton has turned into a valuable penalty-killer as he was second on the team last season in shorthanded ice time (183:52), behind only Sean Couturier (184:51).

The Flyers' 2018-19 campaign was ravaged by inconsistency, but Laughton always played hard and stood out with his effort on the PK. He is slotted to be the Flyers' fourth-line center in 2019-20, between Michael Raffl and possibly Tyler Pitlick.

"When you look at Laughts and Raf, they play some heavy minutes, they can grind it out in the offensive zone and make it hard for the opposition and change momentum," former Flyers interim head coach Scott Gordon said in March. "So the next line that comes out there can have an easier time because the previous line from the opponent couldn't get onto the ice.

"Those guys are invaluable and they are just as important as guys that are putting up the big points."

Ivan Provorov and Travis Konecny, both not arbitration eligible, are the Flyers' remaining RFAs. Provorov's new contract could take time as both sides appear to be at somewhat of a standstill, while Konecny could be in for a bridge deal (see story).

"I expect as the summer goes on, we'll continue to chip away at this," Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher said Friday via a conference call. "The market will continue to flesh out as we go and we'll get there; we'll get there by the end."

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An update on Flyers restricted free agents Ivan Provorov, Travis Konecny

An update on Flyers restricted free agents Ivan Provorov, Travis Konecny

Updated: 6:55 p.m.

Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher has two restricted free agents to re-sign.

Arguably the biggest of the two, Ivan Provorov, could take some time for both parties to settle on a new contract, a scenario that seemed inevitable with the way the NHL offseason is unfolding, specifically restricted free agency.

Provorov is a 22-year-old foundational piece for the Flyers' blue line. The 2015 seventh overall draft pick looks poised for a long-term deal and significant raise, despite not looking totally like himself in 2018-19 following a breakout 2017-18 season.

Why could re-signing him take a while?

Because the RFA market can turn into a stalemate as others want to wait and see which contracts are signed to use them as leverage or a framework in negotiations.

Some notable restricted free-agent defensemen still need new deals: Jacob Trouba, Zach Werenski, Charlie McAvoy and Neal Pionk.

Fletcher said negotiations with Provorov's camp have been "amicable."

"I spoke with Mark Gandler (Provorov's agent) just a few days ago, everything is cordial and amicable," Fletcher said Friday via a conference call. "But I think until the market settles out a bit, it may be difficult to move forward on Provorov."

Provorov, who had a cap hit of $894,167 in 2018-19 with an AAV of $1,744,167 on his previous deal, didn't sound worried about his new contract after the season.

"I love everything here," he said in April. "Love the guys and love the organization and everything about Philadelphia. It's not going to be a problem."

Forward Travis Konecny is the other remaining RFA after Scott Laughton agreed to terms Friday night on a new deal (see story).

Could the 22-year-old Konecny be in line for a bridge deal? Possibly.

"Konecny, we've had some good conversations and we'll continue to work at it," Fletcher said.

"I expect as the summer goes on, we'll continue to chip away at this, the market will continue to flesh out as we go and we'll get there; we'll get there by the end."

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Flyers restricted free agent Scott Laughton files for salary arbitration

Flyers restricted free agent Scott Laughton files for salary arbitration

Scott Laughton, one of the Flyers' three remaining restricted free agents, filed for salary arbitration Friday night, according to a release by the NHLPA.

Travis Konecny and Ivan Provorov, the Flyers' other two RFAs, are not arbitration eligible.

The deadline for player-elected arbitration was 5 p.m. Eastern Time Friday. The deadline for club-elected arbitration is 5 p.m. Eastern Time Saturday.

By electing for arbitration, Laughton and the Flyers can go to a hearing with an independent arbitrator to settle on a salary. General manager Chuck Fletcher and the representation for Laughton can continue to negotiate and possibly strike a deal before a hearing is had. Arbitration hearings are held from July 20 to Aug. 4 in Toronto.

The 25-year-old Laughton enjoyed a career season during 2018-19, putting up personal bests in goals (12), assists (20), games (82) and ice time per game (14:51). The 2012 first-round pick was one of the Flyers' most consistent, hard-working players in a season marred by inconsistency. Among the team's forwards, Laughton was second in shorthanded ice time (183:52), behind only Sean Couturier (184:51). For much of the season, Laughton looked like the Flyers' best penalty-killer in the way he challenged opposing puck carriers, forcing them to make decisions.

In 2019-20, he is pegged to be the Flyers' fourth-line center and should be relied upon heavily again for the PK. Laughton's previous contract was a two-year, $1.925 million deal with an average annual value of $962,500.

"With Scotty Laughton, certainly he has the ability to file for arbitration and if that happens, that will speed up that process — whether it gets done right away or it gets done in the end of July," Fletcher said last week. "The other two that are [non-arbitration], it may take some time. Just looking around the league, it sure seems to be a common theme."

Last summer, Taylor Leier and Alex Lyon filed for salary arbitration. Both were re-signed before July 20 by former GM Ron Hextall. During the summer of 2016, Brayden Schenn and the Flyers came awfully close to meeting with an independent arbitrator but the two parties avoided doing so by agreeing to a four-year deal the morning of the hearing.

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