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Clarke: Flyers’ scouts wanted Makar over Patrick, Hextall wouldn’t listen

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Nolan Patrick Flyers

Bob Clarke verbally blasted former Flyers general manager Ron Hextall on Tuesday for selecting Nolan Patrick with the No. 2 overall selection in the 2017 draft and bypassing defenseman Cale Makar.

Patrick, 23, is now with Vegas, and his disappointing career has been filled with injuries. Makar, chosen by Colorado two picks after Patrick, has become one of the NHL’s best defensemen.

Makar, 23, has 31 points (15 goals, 16 assists) in 28 games this season for the Avs.

“You get the second pick in the draft and we end up drafting Nolan Patrick,” Clarke, a Flyers senior adviser, said Tuesday on the Cam and Stick podcast, which is done by former NHL enforcer Cam Janssen and reporter Andy Strickland.  “None of our scouts wanted Nolan Patrick. I don’t know where Patrick should have gone. After his

performance in Brandon (of the Western Hockey League), he was a pretty good player. They wanted Makar. Of course he went next (actually, two picks later) and now he’s a superstar, and Patrick hasn’t played (much). But Hextall made that choice himself, and there were other choices that were made in our drafts that we’re paying for.

“We’ve got two or three first-round picks that are never going to play,” he added, perhaps referring to German Rubtsov and Jay O’Brien, though the latter has been productive this season at Boston University.  “That’s why we’re struggling. Hexy made some huge mistakes.”

Hextall’s first round picks while he was with the Flyers: Travis Sanheim, Ivan Provorov, Travis Konecny, Rubtsov, Patrick, Frost, Farabee, and O’Brien.  Many of those selections still have a chance to be high-quality players.

 

Hextall, now the Pittsburgh general manager, texted Philly Hockey Now on Tuesday night and said he was “aware” of Clarke’s critical comments, “but (I) don’t want to respond at this time.”

Also in the podcast, Clarke was reminded that Hextall traded Brayden Schenn to the St. Louis Blues.

“That was just as bad,” Clarke said. “Nobody knew it. Hexy made that on his own. Our scouts were so mad at Hexy for doing that,.”

The Flyers may eventually win that trade because they received draft picks that turned into Farabee, who led the team with 20 goals last season and the promising Frost.

Clarke said Hextall also had a chance to get Ryan O’Reilly when he played for Buffalo but didn’t, “and that’s another one the scouts weren’t consulted on.”

After Hextall became the Flyers’ seventh general manager in franchise history in 2014, he “alienated everybody right away,” Clarke said. “He shut his door, he locked the door. He was the boss and nobody else was part of it. … He made himself bigger than the team.”

The full Cam & Strick Podcast:

 

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[…] Philadelphia Flyers legend Bobby Clarke absolutely went off on former Flyers and current Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ron Hextall Tuesday. Clarke claims that the majority of Flyers hockey ops staff wanted the Flyers to draft now Colorado Avalanche star defenseman Cale Makar over former Flyers and current Vegas Golden Knights forward Nolan Patrick at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. (Philly Hockey Now) […]

[…] Bob Clarke verbally blasted former Flyers general manager Ron Hextall on Tuesday for selecting Nolan Patrick with the No. 2 overall selection in the 2017 draft and bypassing defenseman Cale Makar. Patrick, 23, is now with Vegas, and his disappointing career has been filled with injuries. Makar, chosen by Colorado two picks after Patrick, has become one of the NHL’s best defensemen. (Philly Hockey Now) […]

[…] what was so startling about Clarke’s statement Tuesday was that he said “none of our scouts” wanted […]

[…] consensus  No. 1 overall pick this year, it’s important to keep in mind that most experts – but not Flyers scouts, according to Bob Clarke – had Nolan Patrick ranked No. 1 or 2 before the 2017 draft, and you know how that turned […]

[…] Hextall rebuilt an awful farm system, did a masterful job clearing cap space, and drafted players like Joel Farabee, Carter Hart, Ivan Provorov, Travis Sanheim, Oskar Lindblom, and Travis Konecny. The jury is still out on some of those players, but there’s no denying their great potential. (Clarke, of course, will argue that Cale Makar should have been selected over Nolan Patrick. […]

[…] Clarke claimed all of the Flyers’ scouts wanted Cale Makar, not Patrick. Hextall overruled them, Clarke said. Makar was chosen by Colorado two picks after Patrick, and he has become an elite defenseman for the Avs. […]

[…] Here’s the story on Clarke’s claims: Read here.  […]

[…] Clarke, a Flyers adviser, caused a stir in January when he said then-general manager Ron Hextall was the only person in the Flyers’ draft room wh… Clarke claimed all the Philadelphia Flyers’ scouts wanted Makar. Hextall, now the […]

[…] Makar is the player Flyers scouts wanted then-GM Ron Hextall to take, club executive Bob Clarke has claimed. […]

[…] 13 points, including eight goals, in just 10 games for Colorado. Defenseman Cale Makar, whom the Philadelphia Flyers bypassed in the 2017 draft, also has a team-high 13 points for the […]

[…] supplied energy and physicality on a team filled with stars like Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, Cale Makar, Gabe Landeskog, and Nazem […]

[…] Defenseman Cale Makar, a player the Flyers and two other teams bypassed in the 2017 draft, has 22 points in 14 games to lead the Avs in the playoffs. Nathan MacKinnon […]

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