A Look At The 'New Guys': Columbus Gets Carter, The Flyers Get...
Welcome to the third installment of a five-part series focusing on the Flyers’ ‘new guys’ – offseason acquisitions, draft picks, and players who have made the jump from the AHL to the NHL. In this piece, we’ll be focusing on Jakub Voracek, acquired in the Jeff Carter trade, and Sean Couturier, drafted by the Flyers after they acquired eighth overall pick from Columbus in that trade.
Jakub “Jake” Voracek was selected by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the first round of the 2007 NHL entry draft and signed a three-year entry-level deal with the team.
The 22-year-old was traded to the Flyers on June 23 along with first and third-round draft picks in exchange for the Flyers’ leading goal-scorer, Jeff Carter.
Voracek played in 241 total games with the Blue Jackets, recording a total of 134 points (39 goals, 95 assists).
In his time with the Flyers thus far, Voracek has done nicely for himself, scoring 20 points in 30 games. He’s somewhat of a streaky player, but lately, he’s been on a hot streak, with four points in his last five games.
He’s had three multi-point games this season, including a 3-point night against his former team back on November 5th.
The right-winger brings a lot to the Flyers. His size, speed, and on-ice smarts not only make him a skilled player, but an effective one.
Voracek is a playmaker. While he won’t always be the most noticeable player on the ice, he’s always working hard to make things happen.
He isn’t a flashy player, but he gets the job done.
At 22, Voracek is still young and still has room for improvement. Playing alongside all of the talents that the Flyers have will surely help him develop into an even more skilled player and make him an even bigger adversary against future opponents.
19-year-old Sean Couturier was selected by the Flyers in the first round of the 2011 entry draft. He was selected eighth overall, as the Flyers used their pick acquired in the Carter trade.
The native of Phoenix spent three years in the QMJHL and had himself an incredibly successful junior hockey career.
As a member of the Drummondville Voltigeurs, Couturier recorded 223 points in 184 games, and had back-to-back 96-point seasons.
The Voltigeurs made the QMJHL playoffs each of the three years Couturier spent with the club, and Couturier continued his stellar play into the postseason, scoring 37 points in 43 playoff games.
Couturier’s efforts were rewarded with accolades. He won the President’s Cup with the Voltigeurs in 2009, and was awarded the Jean Beliveau Trophy – given to the league’s leading scorer – at the end of the 2009-2010 season.
So far, Couturier has been surpassing expectations. Though he only has 9 points in 30 games with the Flyers, he’s been contributing all over the ice. He is a talented 2-way center, and has developed into a very smart playmaker.
Since the beginning of the season, Couturier has been centering the fourth line – most often with Zac Rinaldo and Harry Zolnierczyk – but that changed recently, with the injury to Claude Giroux.
After Giroux went down with a head injury, Coach Peter Laviolette moved Couturier up to the first line, where he would center Jaromir Jagr and Scott Hartnell.
Such a move signifies Laviolette’s confidence in the young player, and Couturier has played well on that line in his first two games in his new role. With Giroux’s status as ‘out indefinitely,’ it seems that Couturier will remain on the first line for the time being.
Though he stands as a rookie between the legendary Jagr and the hot Hartnell, Couturier has the smarts and the talent to stand out on his own. In his new role, he’ll have the opportunity to do just that.