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Flyers Trade Fallout: More Moves Coming for Philly



Philadelphia Flyers news
The Philadelphia Flyers defense pair of Nick Seeler and Sean Walker figure to be popular commodities in the coming weeks. (Photo: AP)

The Philadelphia Flyers acquired Jamie Drysdale and a 2025 second-round pick from the Anaheim Ducks on Monday in exchange for Cutter Gauthier, and it leaves them in a rather interesting spot. Following the Drysdale trade, the Flyers now have *checks notes * eight defensemen on their roster. Once Noah Cates is activated from injured reserve, the house will be even more packed, and that will mean three guys are going to have to be healthy scratches. Or, at least that’s what we think.

Flyers’ head coach John Tortorella has preferred left-shot defenseman Travis Sanheim on the right but did mention the possibility of Sanheim moving back to the left to accommodate Drysdale. If there’s one way to describe Tortorella’s coaching methods, it would be, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” This would then mean two spots on the right for the three of Drysdale, Sean Walker, and Rasmus Ristolainen. Walker is a pending UFA who has been the subject of trade chatter amongst national media since the end of October. Elliotte Friedman had previously reported that Ristolainen is a target of the Toronto Maple Leafs, who had a representative in attendance at the Flyers-Penguins game on Monday night as the Drysdale trade went down.

Then, on the left, the Flyers still have Nick Seeler – Walker’s defense partner, who is also a pending UFA. Friedman shared that at least one team called Philly about trading for both players in a package deal early in December. Marc Staal, another pending UFA who is also a favorite of Tortorella’s, will turn 37 next week and has only played in 16 games this year as part of a rotation with Egor Zamula, which lately has swung in the latter’s favor.

Regardless, no matter which way you slice this, the Flyers are bound to have another move up their sleeves. Tortorella will have a headache trying to balance the playing time between any three given healthy scratches. Maybe having all the extra bodies will be a good thing with the gauntlet of a schedule the team has this month. Maybe not.

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