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Briere Comments on Flyers’ Future: ‘We still need to find more talent’

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Philadelphia Flyers general manager Danny Briere is in Finland getting a closer look at some of the best prospects of the 2024 NHL Draft during the IIHF Men’s U18 World Championships, and his motive is simple. Briere seeks to find the next building blocks for the Flyers’ future.

The second-year GM spent some time with TSN’s Bryan Mudryk to explain the process and where his head is at with the 2024 NHL Draft just under a month away.

“There’s a lot of good players. That’s what’s so good about coming here to this tournament, the U18,” Briere said. “Players change so much, too, when you see them in August at the Hlinka, to, all throughout the season the different places they play, the different tournaments. . . It gives you a better insight going to the draft in just a few weeks.”

Briere appears to already have some ideas in his head ahead of the 2024 NHL Draft, too. The Flyers will have their own first-round pick, as well as the one acquired from the Florida Panthers. That should set them up to add another two building blocks for the future if they play their cards right.

“We try not to get too excited about that crew,” Briere said of the 2025 NHL Draft-eligible players, likely referring to Canada forwards Caleb Desnoyers and Porter Martone. “But, they’ve been impressive, especially the guys for Canada. The top line (Desnoyers, Martone, and Gavin McKenna), the two defensemen; it’s been really impressive.

“It gets you thinking and excited about 2025, but there’s some good players in ’24, too. That’s what we’re focusing on this season.”

McKenna won’t be draft-eligible until 2026, but Desnoyers and Martone are officially showcasing themselves for this time next year.

As for players the Flyers might be interested in this year, it sounds like Briere has gotten a good look at the Canada group so far. That includes names like Tij Iginla, Henry Mews, Jett Luchanko, Ryder Ritchie, Liam Greentree, Maxim Masse, Cole Beaudoin, and more.

Perhaps Charlie Elick, a Brandon Wheat Kings teammate of Flyers prospect Carson Bjarnason who plays on Canada’s top defense pairing, is one of the defensemen Briere was referring to.

Iginla is the likeliest of the group to be selected with the Flyers’ earlier of the two first-round picks, but the late first-round pick seems totally up in the air. At least Briere isn’t short of good options.

“We got to keep in perspective that we have a young team. We still need to find more talent; find ways to score more goals,” Briere added. “That’s going to be the key moving forward.”

Briere and the Flyers insist on continuing the rebuild the way they’ve gone about it since Day 1, which reinforces the notion from Briere’s exit interview that the Flyers are not necessarily requiring a playoff berth next year, even after all that they achieved this season.

The Flyers have a plan, and they’re sticking to it regardless of the circumstances. That’s the right way to do business.

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