Quick Hits: June 24, 2021
1) In the current edition of the Flyers Daily Podcast, Jason Myrtetus talks about the realities of team building and looks at the common denominators that winning teams have in today's NHL. In the next installment, which will go live tomorrow, Jason and I discuss the Montreal Canadiens' playoff run this year and then complete our Offseason Outlook series on Flyers forwards. In this installment, we look at Joel Farabee, Kevin Hayes, Scott Laughton, Nolan Patrick, Oskar Lindblom, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Tanner Laczynski and Wade Allison. To listen, click here
2) The NHL Coaches Association's annual Global Coaches' Clinic is ongoing this week. For the second straight year, it is a remote access event. Today's sessions feature one of the highlights of the symposium: a panel discussion featuring Florida Panthers head coach Joel Quenneville, now-former Columbus Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella and Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault. Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette spoke yesterday on the topic of interviewing with teams.
3) Yesterday marked the 21st anniversary of 2000 NHL Expansion Draft. While the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft will have very generous eligibility rules favoring the brand-new Seattle Kraken (just as the 2017 Expansion Draft was to the Vegas Golden Knights), the 2000 Expansion Draft was the final one where the scales tilted heavily in favor of the pre-existing teams. This was true boh in terms of the number of protection slots allowed per team and the exemptions allotted for young players in the system.
Back in 2000, teams could protect one goalie, five defensemen and nine forwards who otherwise met the eligibility rules. There was also a two-goalie protection option, which reduced the number of protected skaters to three defensemen and seven forwards.
If a team protected only one goalie, they could leave any other goalie in the system unprotected, including veteran European league goalies whose rights the NHL club for one reason or another. In terms of position player exposure, the only requirement was that one exposed defensemen and two exposed forwards had to have played at least 40 NHL games the previous year or a combined 70 games over the last two seasons.
With 15 protected slots allotted per club and the two most recent expansion teams (Nashville and Atlanta) having their entire rosters exempt -- as Vegas will be this year -- the available pickings for the Columbus Blue Jackets and Minnesota Wild were pretty slim. Each team lost exactly two players. Also keep in mind that there was no NHL salary cap at the time, so there was no push-pull of getting to the cap floor and working to stay compliant with the ceiling.
The only real wheeling-and-dealing surrounding the 2000 Expansion Draft centered around Minnesota or the Blue Jackets picking certain players for purposes of flipping them to other NHL clubs. There wasn't nearly as much deal-making to take/not take certain exposed players.
In the Flyers' case, all the team lost to the Expansion Draft was two older European prospects. The Flyers lost Russian defenseman Artem Anisimov (not to be confused by the latter-day NHL forward of the same name) to Minnesota with the 21st overall pick and Czech forward Martin Streit to Columbus with the 44th overall pick. Neither ever came over to North America.
Anisimov had once been an intriguing prospect, ranked by The Hockey News in 1995 as a four-star prospect (Janne Niinimaa was the Flyers only other prospect of the time with that high of a rating). Drafted by the Flyers in the third round (62nd overall) of the 1994 Draft, he was a hard-hitting shutdown defenseman who got under opponents' skin; frequently compared to Darius Kasparaitis. Anisimov was the Russian junior national team partner of offensive defenseman Oleg Tverdovsky.
Unfortunately for Anisimov, midway through the 1995-96 season, he sustained a serious knee injury that kept him out of action for more than a calendar year. Although he eventually returned and played in the Russian Super League (the predecessor to the KHL) until 2007-08, he was never again the type of in-your-face aggressive defender and hitter that he was before. He disappeared off the prospect map by the late 1990s.
Martin Streit (no relation to Swiss NHLer and Flyers Alum Mark Streit) was a Czech forward with good size and athleticism, drafted by the Flyers in the 7th round of the 1995 Draft. He showed hints of offensive promise with HC Oloumouc and HC Karlovy Vary but never blossomed into an upper-lineup player even at the Extraliga level. He was a decent defensive forward, though, and carved out a career as a journeyman third-liner in the top Czech league.
4) Today in Flyers History: On June 24, 2019, the Flyers re-signed impending restricted free agent defenseman Travis Sanheim to a two-year contract. The team also traded impending restricted free agent winger Ryan Hartman to the Dallas Stars in exchange for winger Tyler Pitlick.