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Experts Say: Tyson Foerster Could Be Big Thing For Flyers

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Tyson Foerster (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Tyson Foerster (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

For a guy who has played only eight NHL games, Philadelphia Flyers prospect Tyson Foerster continues to attract enormous attention.

Throughout the offseason, Foerster has earned the respect of various media, including a recent segment on NHL Network. Surveys this offseason have ranked Foerster among the NHL’s top prospects.

He scored three goals and four assists in his eight Flyers’ games, and earned the praise of coach John Tortorella. 

Some of that Foerster love:

  • The Athletic picked its top 50 prospects. Foerster made honorable mention as did Emil Andrae and Bobby Brink.
  • NHL Network picked its top 50 prospects and Foerster ranked 49th. NHL Network experts ranked all players 25-and-under who have played fewer than 25 NHL games.
  • Foerster was one of six players named to the inaugural AHL Top Prospects Team.
  • Foerster was ranked 225th in the NHL.com fantasy hockey top 250.
  • Hockey Prospects ranked teams in May (before the draft) and the Flyers finished 10th. The Flyers’ top 5 skater prospects were: Foester, Cam York, Cutter Gauthier, Brink and Andrae.

Voorhees to Philly?

Foerster, 21, was a first-round pick in 2020, the 23rd player selected.

He has an excellent opportunity to make the Flyers coming out of training camp. It would be a disappointment to Foerster and the Flyers if he were to start the season in Lehigh Valley.

The right wing is 6-foot-2, 194 pounds. He has shown a two-way game. Foerster becoming an established, productive player would immensely help the Flyers’ rebuild.

Mike Kelly is an NHL Network analyst specializing in analytics. Just the other day he talked about Foerster.

“Tyson Foerster is the guy I want to talk about,” Kelly said on NHL Network. “I am big on this guy.

“Man, if you’re a Flyers fan you should be excited. He gets a little bit of a taste with Philadelphia last season — plays eight games, seven points, not a big deal, pretty good. Forty-eight points in 66 games in the American League.

“Skating was a development area for him and he got better in that area this past season. It’s just not the offense with this guy, though.”

Defensive Ability

Foerster, who is from Alliston, Ontario, impresses with his defensive ability.

Kelly said: “And this is one of the things that he said: ‘It’s not even just the points [Foerster said]. I think I was playing pretty well in the D-zone, blocking shots, and doing all the little things right. So I think I did pretty good,’ in his time with the Philadelphia Flyers.

“Let me show you how well he did with the Philadelphia Flyers. There’s some key areas here. This is per game forward ranks. Again, it’s eight games, the sample is small.”

Here are some of Foerster’s forward rankings:

  • Expected goals: 0.38, (33rd)
  • Rush chances: 0.88 (27th)
  • Turnover rate: 13 percent (10th)
  • Blocked shots: 0.88 (11th)
  • Stick checks: 1.3 (15th)

“Turnover rate — for a young player to manage the puck that well, is impressive,” Kelly said. “He talked about blocking shots and being good defensively. Those are top-15 rankings per game.

“I’ll couch it with the fact that of course it’s only over eight games and we’ll see what happens over a longer season.

“This is a player that I think, though, can not only make the team. He’d potentially be an impact player for the Philadelphia Flyers.

“Love his game. [Flyers coach John] Tortorella, by all accounts, loves him so it tells you a little bit about what they think about this kid.”

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