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Flyers, Danny Briere Make Big Bet on 2025 NHL Draft

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(Photo: AP)

The first round of the 2024 NHL Draft came to an unceremonious end on Friday night, as the Philadelphia Flyers traded the 32nd overall pick to the Edmonton Oilers, effectively punting the pick to the 2025 NHL Draft.

The Oilers’ 2025 first-round pick, per Flyers general manager Danny Briere, is top-12 protected. In the case that Edmonton’s 2025 pick is a top-12 pick, the Flyers will instead receive a 2026 first-round pick. With the Flyers’ 32nd overall pick, Edmonton selected London Knights center Sam O’Reilly.

By all accounts, the Flyers are expecting the 2025 NHL Draft to be an amazing draft, and they currently hold three first-round picks in that draft, assuming Edmonton’s pick does not fall in the top-12. This also means the Flyers did not feel strongly about the remaining talent in the 2024 NHL Draft, which includes standout wingers like Igor Chernyshov, Nikita Artamonov, and Teddy Stiga; Philadelphia doesn’t pick again until the 51st overall pick in the second round.

Further to this point, Briere confirmed that the Flyers were looking to move up in the 2024 draft, but that the rumors about the fourth and fifth overall picks were “greatly overblown”. TSN NHL insider Pierre LeBrun reported soon after that the Chicago Blackhawks offered an unprotected 2025 first-round pick and more to Columbus for the fourth overall pick, but that offer was ultimately rejected.

With the fourth pick, Columbus selected Cayden Lindstrom.

The Flyers selected Jett Luchanko with the 13th overall pick, acquired via trade with Minnesota, and he was someone they coveted, similarly to Columbus and Lindstrom. But given Luchanko’s average size and status as a high-upside play, the Flyers will again have to wait until the 2025 NHL Draft to acquire more of that proverbial “high-end” talent.

Artamonov, Stiga, and Chernyshov could all certainly fall to Philadelphia late in the second round, but the odds don’t favor that outcome.

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