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Exit Interview: How much did trade rumors affect Scott Laughton?



Scott Laughton, Philadelphia Flyers Interview

Scott Laughton was one of the main characters for the Flyers around the trade deadline.

There were a few other minor pieces on expiring contracts (Erik Gustafsson, Michael Raffl) that the Flyers flipped at the deadline, but Laughton carved out a nice role for himself on the team. The Flyers could’ve looked to move him –– and did look to move him ––, but ultimately re-signed him to a five-year contract extension.

Laughton broke out last season with 27 points (13 goals, 14 assists) in just 49 games, but had 20 points in 53 games this season. He admitted that he was pressing at times around the deadline.

Scott Laughton Exit Interview

What’s your assessment of your play this season?

Yeah. I think I talked about it a couple days ago. You go 30 games without a point or a goal, or whatever it was, 25 games, I can’t remember, in the most important stretch of the year when we’re battling. That’s definitely the most frustrating part of my year and not being able to provide offense when we couldn’t get things going. That was frustrating. At the same time I try to bring the same thing every night. I try and bring some energy, physicality, be good on the defensive side of the puck and try to be good on faceoffs. Things like that. Those are little things that I’ll continue to work on and try to get better for this group. But definitely, when you go through that sort of a stretch where you can’t get to anything going offensively, especially when you’re put in a situation in the top six, or the top nine, where you’re expected to provide it. It hurts.

Stepping back from the season a little bit. Are you any closer to figuring out what all the slow starts were about and, and getting behind and that type of thing?

Yes, that’s a good question. It’s a hard league to chase games and we did that a lot this year. You go down two, three nothing. Your game changes a little bit. You’re trying to press the issue a little bit more. We need to figure that out. You need to be ready, right from this from the puck drop and we didn’t do that enough this year. It’s not good enough. That falls on us as players to go out and be ready to get the job done. Gonna be a long summer.

By the end of the season, was there an element from your perspective of just kind of being worn down by COVID, the schedule, and trade rumors? Do you think that impacted your production at the end of year?

Yeah, I don’t want to use it as an excuse. COVID affected everyone a little bit differently. I lost a little bit of weight. I’ll try to get that back, get back on track with my fitness, just being at my regular playing weight and being able to do that. It’s pretty hard to do that when you can’t taste food or things like that. The second part of the question, I think this was kind of my first time going through trade deadline where I was thinking, am I getting moved and what’s happening with that? You’re definitely pressing your stick a little bit. I wanted to say that it wasn’t in the back of my head, but I’d be lying if it wasn’t. Just pressing a little bit. At the same time you got to show up every day, be a pro and be a good teammate and be able to provide. Yeah frustrating.

Did you notice this season wearing on Carter Hart a little bit just as he kind of struggled from a production standpoint?

I’m not sure. I think COVID has been tough for everyone. I think we’ve been pretty lucky to go do our jobs, do something that we love to do and be able to do that while a lot of our families and friends are back home in lockdowns and not being able to work and do anything. We’re in a lucky situation here. It’s different. You’re not able to go for dinners with the guys and spend time away from the rink. I guess really get to know the new guys or whoever comes in. I guess it’s different for single guys too. It’s tough. Tough way to do it. Try to come to the rink, be a pro every day and do your best.

One of the things that AV talked about is being an issue for this team this year was not being able to correct problems at practice, because you really didn’t have an opportunity to practice. You’ve been around this organization for quite a while now. Is the current generation of player the kind of player that needs to do something more hands on and not necessarily just look at it on video and be able to go okay, yeah, we can fix that or did you come back maybe think that that could kind of been part of the problem here? Is that a little bit different than maybe in the past?

I said it before, you can’t use it as an excuse. Every team went through it. Our schedule was a little different when COVID hit and we played a couple games without regulars and things like that. I think practice definitely helps you, especially when you have a younger team and guys trying to find their way in this league. It definitely helps to try and get your pace back and keep you in shape and work on the systems that you’re supposed to play and create an identity. We just couldn’t find a way to do it this year.

Transcript via Philadelphia Flyers

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