Michael Raffl, Tye McGinn, Jason Akeson, and Scott Laughton are all vying for that final spot. If the Flyers choose to go with 14 forwards, there might be two final spots. Stay tuned on that.
Raffl, 24, is an Austrian-born forward who signed with the Flyers last spring. His play so far during the preseason makes you believe that he might have a slight edge on the rest of the group to make the Flyers.
When Raffl signed, many believed he would play a year or two with the Phantoms before making the jump to the NHL. He played in Allsvenskan, the second-tier Swedish league, scoring 24 goals and adding 22 assists in 49 games played. Raffle figured to make the jump to the Swedish Elite League but opted to come to the Flyers.
The 6'1", 192 lbs. winger has made a much smoother transition to the small ice in the NHL than most expected. Vinny Lecavalier told CSN Philly that he and Raffl "connected right away" and it made "for a lot easier game." Having Lecavalier on your side has got to help your chances.
Raffl reminds me a lot of Matt Read but even more offensive-minded. He has good hands and a knack for creating scoring opportunities. Whether he needs a season or two with the Phantoms or makes the Flyers this year, I think this kid has the potential to be a very solid player at the NHL level.
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