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Exit Interview: Sam Morin wants to be the enforcer that the Flyers need

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Sam Morin Exit Interview

Sam Morin had an interesting season for the Philadelphia Flyers. The defenseman was moved up to left wing in training camp, but that quickly ended after a few lapses in his own zone. He went back to his natural position as a defenseman for some games in Lehigh Valley and was in and out of the lineup for the Flyers in the latter half of the season.

Moving Morin to forward wasn’t a horrible idea. He’s primarily known for his physical play and intimidation factor. A guy like that can be hidden more as the 12th forward rather than the sixth defenseman. But it didn’t work out.

Morin dealt with a few major knee injuries in recent years, so it was good for him to just be healthy for the season. He is now a pending free agent.

During his exit interview last week, Morin appeared to be making a case for himself to stay on the roster next year –– or he was hyping himself up for the open market.


How would you evaluate your season, specifically as a defenseman? Was it tough to go back? Or was it easy because you had played there before?

Yeah, I think my season was fine. Obviously, if you told me, at the beginning of the year I would have played 20 games in NHL as a D-man. I don’t know how many I played like 17 or 20. I would take it you know, so pretty happy about it. I stayed healthy, so that’s the good news.

Do you feel like you can be a part of this Flyers defense next year?

I don’t know. I didn’t meet with Chuck yet. Obviously, I want to stay. My contract is up. The stuff I bring, I don’t think a lot of guys bring it in this organization. It’s kind of pretty rare now. I think I’m probably one of the toughest guy in the league to be honest. Obviously next year, we’re going to play those big, boys in the West and I’m kind of ready to prove it. I think I can bring something that no one here can bring. Obviously, it’s not up to me. I feel I’m a Flyer. And yeah, for sure. I want to stay.

What is your plan in the next few weeks as a free agent? Does being healthy for a full offseason play any part of what your decision will be going into next year?

When I started playing defense down there in the Phantoms, I was like, man, when I do get a full summer training, I’m going to feel good. Because it was still a rehab season for me, kind of. When you tear your ACL twice and still a little bit of pain in my knee, it takes like a year or two before you feel 100 percent. I just see myself next year. I think I got to be skating even better, like without pain and stuff. I’m gonna be buzzing. I’d be ready to go.

Was it kind of hard to keep a positive mentality throughout the year or kind of the adversity you’ve gone through? Does that help you in a sense to keep that mentality?

Oh no, I think I was positive all the time. What I went through was hell, honestly. It was terrible. To rehab twice, two ACL. Being so close to a chance to play in the NHL and getting hurt and getting hurt. It wasn’t fun. At the beginning of the year, I just told myself, just go out there and have fun. Just be happy to be part of something again, be part of a team. Obviously, we didn’t make the playoffs. We didn’t play well. We didn’t expect the expectation and stuff. But for me personally, it’s like just being part of a team again was so huge for my mental. I just love it. I love the game. I love to play hockey. And obviously I think next year, I get to play hockey again. There was a lot of doubt about that in the beginning of the year. I think next year I will play again. It’s a lot of positive for me this year. I think

How did you feel overall, if you could put it like a percentage on it this season, health-wise?

I don’t know. I was healthy. I was fine. I mean, some games you’re a little bit slower than others, but all my body was there. I was ready to go. I don’t want to put a percentage on it. I really don’t know. Honestly, I think I think there was still a little bit of pain. At the end of day, it’s nothing I can’t manage. I think after summer training and stuff, that’s all going to be gone. I’m gonna be strong. Like I said, I think I’m gonna be buzzing.

You said that you think you can supply the physicality next year. And you talked about the West teams. Do you find the West teams a lot more physical? It sounds like you’re excited actually, to face those teams.

I never really played against them right. I think the plan of AV was to play me against those big physical teams, like the Islanders and Washington. I remember Ross, like those two first shifts he was running around and hitting those guys pretty hard. I stepped up and we got a pretty good fight. Then it was all gone. The guys can play hockey, you know. It’s still part of the game. I think I’m the only one here that can bring it and I’m really good at it. Obviously, I know guys here appreciate it because I don’t think we have a lot of guys to answer for it. You saw what happened with New York and Washington. It’s still part of game. I just embrace that role and I’m ready to do it.


I want to highlight a few quotes of note:

“The stuff I bring, I don’t think a lot of guys bring it in this organization. It’s kind of pretty rare now. I think I’m probably one of the toughest guy in the league to be honest. Obviously next year, we’re going to play those big, boys in the West and I’m kind of ready to prove it. I think I can bring something that no one here can bring.”

WATCH: Sam Morin takes down Ross Johnston in first-period fight

“I remember Ross, like those two first shifts he was running around and hitting those guys pretty hard. I stepped up and we got a pretty good fight. Then it was all gone. The guys can play hockey, you know. It’s still part of the game. I think I’m the only one here that can bring it and I’m really good at it. Obviously, I know guys here appreciate it because I don’t think we have a lot of guys to answer for it. You saw what happened with New York and Washington. It’s still part of game. I just embrace that role and I’m ready to do it.”

It sure sounds like Sam Morin embraces his role as an enforcer and wants to continue that next season. It remains to be seen if that’ll be with the Flyers or not.


Transcript via Philadelphia Flyers

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Ryan is a proud graduate of Monmouth University. He has covered the Philadelphia Flyers for the better part of a decade at various outlets, including Sons of Penn and Broad Street Hockey. Ryan has also worked for NHL.com and NBC Sports Regional Networks. Whether it's a GIF, quick stat, analysis, or long-form column, he's got you covered.

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[…] Philadelphia Flyers defenseman/forward Sam Morin is ready to be the sheriff next season. (Philly Hockey Now) […]

[…] Samuel Morin expressed his desire to return to Philadelphia in his exit interview. […]

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