The Phantoms roster could look something like this next season:
Read – Schenn – Testwuide
Wellwood – Pither
Couturier – Holmstrom
Ranford – Kalinski – Akeson
Rowe – Sestito – Rinaldo
Marshall – Gustafsson
Bourdon – Lauridsen
Manning – Jancevski
Q: Are you crazy? What’s up with that fourth line? Where’s player X? I love player X!
A: This is just a premature, quick and dirty concept to illustrate the newfound depth in the organization. I’m not actually advocating these should be the lines or the roster at this point. Step back from the edge. Everything will be OK.
Q: Do you really believe this is how the roster will shape up?
A: To some degree, yes. Of course, things could change drastically over the next few months. Tye McGinn, for example, is not even listed on the roster. It’s too early to have a clear view of what this team will look like when the regular season starts. The draft isn’t over yet and free agency hasn’t even started. A lot of things are still in flux.
Q: Can this team compete for the Calder Cup next season?
A: Again, it’s still too early to tell but that would be one heck of a remarkable jump if it did happen. One thing is for sure, though; this is no longer a basement dwelling team.
Joe Paterson, who was re-upped as head coach back in May, did a good job with this young and raw group when he took over behind the bench last season.
After a few seasons of chaos, including a sale of the team and a move from Philadelphia to Glens Falls, New York two years ago, the Phantoms need some stability. Paterson will provide that.
The prospects who could potentially fill out this roster should push the team from the bottom of the standings and, hopefully, towards the playoffs. If Schenn and Couturier do indeed end up in the AHL, they will help generate a lot of much needed offense and you’ll see the point totals of those playing on their wings inflate.
Q: What other positive developments should we expect from the Phantoms?
A: With another season under their belts, defensive prospects such as Marshall, Bourdon, and Gustafsson should provide a maturer, stabilizing presence on the blue line. If Leighton
and/or Bobrovsky ends up on the Phantoms, it would boost the confidence level of the skaters in front of them. The trickle down effect of all this would be that those ugly +/- stats that plagued the team could disappear.
Q: Doesn’t Bob have to clear waiver? Won’t they trade him?
Bob would have to clear waivers but the Flyers can place him on the Phantoms before waivers kick in. They just won’t be able to recall him without the highly probable risk of losing him.
I don’t know if they’ll trade him. I do not see much of a reason to trade a goalie who played well in his freshman season and has high upside. Even if they did trade him, why do it now? His value is not exactly at its peak after the goaltending took the heat for an early postseason exit and while the signing of Ilya Bryzgalov is still fresh in everyone’s mind.
A few months ago, Bobrovsky was the future of this organization. Today, he’s an expendable, costly backup. It’s not exactly the type of perception that nets you top value in the trade market.
N.B. I apologize for the error in this article. I’ve managed to blur the lines between EA’s NHL video game rules and the actual CBA rules.
Q: Do you think we could get a more legitimate opinion than your perspective?
A: Ouch. That hurt. Sure, we can do that for you. Our writer, Penaltykiller, will be conducting and posting an interview with Tim McManus, who covers the Phantoms for the Post-Star, in the near future.
While you’re waiting, here is an interview we did with him last year about Erik Gustafsson.