Flyers showing salary-shedding hopes in Expansion Draft list

Jakub Voracek Flyers
Jakub Voracek
Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports

It’s no mystery that the Philadelphia Flyers are looking to shed some more cap space to continue building a roster that is more of a contender in the Eastern Conference.

More of that notion was shown on Sunday when the NHL released the lists of each team’s protected and exposed players ahead of Wednesday’s Expansion Draft, which sees the Seattle Kraken select one player from 30 teams to build its debut roster for the 2021-22 season.

Of the most notable players left exposed by the Flyers is veteran forward Jakub Voracek, one of the team’s best playmakers over the last decade and a top-10 point scorer in franchise history.

While he’s still plenty productive, his cap hit of $8.25 million over the next three years is hampering a team that is trying to rebuild within one of the toughest divisions of hockey. It was evident when they made one of the largest splashes of the offseason by acquiring defenseman Ryan Ellis and the remaining six years of his eight-year, $50 million deal from the Nashville Predators on Saturday.

Here are the seven forwards, three skaters, and one goalie the Flyers opted to protect from the Kraken:

Flyers protected list

  • Nicolas Aube-Kubel (F)
  • Sean Couturier (F)
  • Claude Giroux (F)
  • Kevin Hayes (F)
  • Travis Konecny (F)
  • Scott Laughton (F)
  • Oskar Lindblom (F)
  • Ryan Ellis (D)
  • Ivan Provorov (D)
  • Travis Sanheim (D)
  • Carter Hart (G)

The appearance of Aube-Kubel on the list might have raised some eyebrows, but the Flyers likely did not want to put a young, cheaper player with offensive upside out on the exposed list. He would have been a much more reasonable acquisition for Seattle compared to Voracek — who still has plenty left in the tank.

As it stands, the Flyers have approximately $9.4 million in cap space heading toward the Expansion Draft, which is Wednesday night at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN.

In total, Seattle will have 20 Flyers to choose from when the clock starts:

  • Andy Andreoff (F)
  • Connor Bunnaman (F)
  • David Kase (F)
  • Pascal Laberge (F)
  • Samuel Morin (F)
  • German Rubtsov (F)
  • Carsen Twarynski (F)
  • James van Riemsdyk (F)
  • Jakub Voracek (F)
  • Mikhail Vorobyev (F)
  • Chris Bigras (D)
  • Justin Braun (D)
  • Shayne Gostisbehere (D)
  • Robert Hagg (D)
  • Derrick Pouliot (D)
  • Nate Prosser (D)
  • Tyler Wotherspoon (D)
  • Brian Elliott (G)
  • Alex Lyon (G)
  • Felix Sandstrom (G)

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