According to The Tennessean's Joshua Cooper, the Predators are shopping defenseman Jonathon Blum. It might make sense that the Flyers take a look at Blum to add to their blue line. He is coming off of a very reasonable one-year, $650,000 deal.
The 23rd overall pick in the 2007 draft, Blum played 35 games last year for the Predators scoring once and adding six assists. The 6'1" 186 lbs. defenseman came up through the Predators organization which has produced all-world defensemen Shea Weber (apple of Paul Holmgren's eye last summer) and Ryan Suter (now with the Wild but also a target of Holmgren's last July).
Blum, 24, has been in and out of the Nashville lineup which has some questioning whether he is in coach Barry Trotz's doghouse. Despite lacking elite defensive size, Blum is very solid. He keeps his stick in passing zones while utilizing a solid poke check and very rarely getting caught out of position.
Not only is he good defensively but he is a puck-moving defenseman which was a need for the Flyers coming into the off-season. Blum is comfortable with the puck on his stick and often pushes the puck up ice. The Southern California native is an exceptional skater for a defenseman which makes it easier to see Blum getting paired with Luke Schenn or Nicklas Grossmann.
He has struggled with consistency at the NHL level but is still young enough to improve given enough playing time. If the Flyers end up moving a more-expensive defenseman this off-season, Blum would be a cheaper option to step in and fill a need for the Flyers.
I wouldn't mind taking a flyer (no pun intended) on this kid. If the price isn't astronomical, why not? If it works out, you have another young puck moving defenseman.
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