The Flyers have started their offseason by bringing back one of their own. On September 17th the Flyers and Nicolas Aube-Kubel agreed to a 2-year deal worth $1.075 million dollars a year.
The 24-year-old former 2nd round pick cracked the Flyers lineup for his first extended look this season and impressed in his stretches with the team. He had 15 points (7 goals, 8 assists) in 36 regular-season games. He was one of the Flyers on a hot streak when the coronavirus paused the season. In his final 15 regular-season games he had 10 points (5 goals, 5 assists) and was one of the most noticeable Flyers night in and night out.
NAK should become a permanent fixture in the lineup next season. The sample size was small but impressive and the quick contract is a reward for a guy who clearly belongs. He also provides more than offense. A relentless forechecker, NAK threw 82 hits in his 36 games which lead all Flyers in that span.
He becomes the first of the Flyers restricted free agents and unrestricted free agents to sign with the team. The Flyers have around $6.2 million in cap space. Phil Myers, Robert Hagg, and Nolan Patrick are all restricted free agents. Justin Braun, Brian Elliot, Derek Grant, Nate Thompson, and Tyler Pitlick are all unrestricted free agents. That’s 8 players for 6.2 million so most of the UFA’s will walk, with Pitlick and Elliot being the two most likely to return. Chuck Fletcher is going to have to make some trades to free up money. Projecting into the 2021 offseason, both Scott Laughton, Matt Niskanen, and Michael Raffl will be UFAs, while Travis Sanheim and Carter Hart will have RFA status.