Welcome to the Journey! This week the focus will be all on one team; the Philadelphia Flyers. But first a quick disclaimer; I am by no means a Flyers fan but a number of their prospects are having seasons too good to ignore. Things may not look so hot on the ice for Philly having lost nine in a row, but with a number of young stars already making their mark along with a stocked prospect pipeline, the future is encouraging.
One doesn’t have to go very far down the AHL scoring charts before the inevitable question of “who the heck is Danick Martel” pops up. He played three seasons for the Blaineville-Boisbriand Armada and got a bit of a late start to his junior career by not playing his first game until he was nearly 18. Martel posted fairly middling numbers in his rookie year with 41 points in 68 games. He kicked it up a notch in year number two by hovering around the point-per-game mark in his second year by putting up 60 in 63 games. But in year three he absolutely exploded with 102 points in 64 games, 48 of these points were goals, and finished second in the league in scoring. For his efforts he earned QMJHL first team All-Star team honours and was named the CHL Humanitarian of the year. So you know he’s a good person on and off the ice! Martel went undrafted but was signed by the Flyers as a free agent as the end of his junior career and has managed to continue his scoring ways at the pro level. Currently in his third pro year Martel already has two 20-plus goal seasons under his belt and is well on his way to a third as he’s currently producing at a 56 goal pace with 14 in 17 games. That’s a lofty number to be sure but even if he slows down he should be able to hit 40 or more. One of his more impressive stretches saw him pot seven goals over a six-game goal-scoring streak. The big club took notice and summoned him just over a week ago. He was getting some chances in the four games in which he suited up including hitting two posts in a recent game against state rival Pittsburgh. Martel was sent back down to Lehigh Valley on Wednesday but this probably won’t be a permanent assignment for him.
Allison has been on an upward trajectory since his playoff performance for the Tri-City Storm in his draft year, leading them to a USHL Clark Cup title and being named Playoff MVP in the process. He was committed to the University of Western Michigan and put together an impressive freshman campaign with 29 points in 36 contests. Thanks to the graduation of the top three scorers from the 2016-17 version of the Broncos, Allison has taken on a larger role in the offense and flourishing, sitting second on his team in scoring. He’s been hovering around the top of the scoring charts in the NCAA all season. At the moment he’s in a tie for eighth with 19 points in 15 games and is tied for sixth in goals with 10. He’s been finding the back of the net in bunches with four multi-goal games including his first college hat trick. A big power winger who has the ability to score and setup up teammates in equal measure, he’s drawn comparison to another ex-Flyer ginger Scott Hartnell. The way Allison is playing right now, it’s a safe bet that he’ll end up putting pen to paper on a contract when his college season wraps up.
Not much was expected out of Marody when he was plucked in the sixth round by the Flyers in 2015. This is someone that was once cut from his high school varsity team which isn’t usually a trait associated with an NHL prospect. But as the famous story goes even Michael Jordan was cut from his high school team.
Not that Marody is the Jordan of hockey but he’s putting himself on the map as a legitimate prospect. Following a 58-point season in the USHL, Marody headed to Ann Arbor to suit up for Michigan. He had a respectable freshman season as a complimentary piece, producing 10 goals and 14 assists in 32 games and missed a month with a bout of mononucleosis. As a sophomore he was ruled out for the fall semester due to academic ineligibility, possibly a carryover affect from having mono. As such he played only 18 games and posted 15 points, making a positional switch from wing to centre in the process. Finally healthy and with his grades up, Marody is showing what he can what he can do. He’s already surpassed his sophomore totals and currently sits with four goals and 21 points in 14 games for the Wolverines. The junior is ahead of his next closest teammate by six points and is second in the nation with 17 helpers. A creative forward with superior vision and an above average shot Marody is worth a flyer (pun intended) if you’ve got a deep prospect bench.
There were a few eyebrows raised when the Flyers selected Frost towards the end of the first round in the 2017 draft. Some didn’t think his skating was up to snuff or that his skillset wasn’t dynamic enough to warrant a first-round pick. But he’s silencing any and all the doubters with the way he’s performed so far this season. He’s formed a lethal duo with Boris Katchouk and places second on the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds with 36 points and 1.44 points-per-game, fifth and ninth respectively in the OHL, including a team leading 24 helpers, the third highest mark in the league. Only a serious injury will prevent him from besting last year’s totals and he’s only 24 points shy with 50 games to go. A few reasons for the big jump in points, in spite of his five-on-five number being down ever so slightly down, have been Frost being featured more in the offensive game plan, his primary assist rate has nearly doubled, and his production on the power play has taken a step forward. He’s found the back of the net four times with the man advantage this season (he had eight PP markers all of last year) and has five helpers. The third year Greyhound has been especially hot lately riding a three game stretch where he’s registered eight points.
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