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Today I thought would be fun to look at a Flyer in depth. I was thinking Danny B, but lets save him for tomorrow and look at the newest Flyer to resign, Jakub Voracek.
Before the details come out, just by watching him skate this past year, here is his OBVIOUS pros and cons
PROS- very fast, excellent passer, amazing control over the puck
CONS- he constantly puts himself in vulnerable positions to be hammered by opposing D.
Right now, Voracek is 22, turning 23 in mid August. He was picked 7th overall in 2007 by the Columbus Blue Jackets. In 06-07 & 07-08 he played in the QMJHL for the Halifax Mooseheads where his first year he put 23 goals 63 assists for 86 points in 59 games. Very respectable numbers for "Jake". His second year he really broke out with 33 goals 68 assists for 101 points in 53 games. Looks extremely promising from there doesn't he?
The following year with Columbus he had a decent rookie year tallying 38 points. He followed that up with his career high 50 point season in 09-10. In his last year in Columbus he put up 46 points, but it was clear that his potential was through the roof.
On June 23, 2011, before the NHL draft, Voracek was traded to Philadelphia with the 8th overall pick (Couts) and a 3rd round pick (cousins) for the infamous Jeff Carter. I was really excited to hear Carter finally departing, but hearing Voracek being part of the deal got me really excited.
He had a pretty decent year with the Flyers this past year putting up 18 goals and 31 assists for 49 points (his 2nd highest point total). In game 1 against the Penguins in the 1st round of the playoffs, he notched the OT winner after an epic comeback by the orange and black, started by Danny Brieres questionable goal.
With so many question marks this summer hanging over the Flyers head this offseason, Jakub was not signed immediately, or relatively quick for that matter. After striking out on the Parise/Suter combo, losing out on the Shea Weber offer sheet, the Flyers got their heads out of their asses and sat down with former Flyer Petr Svoboda (Jakes agent) and made a deal. On July 26,2012 Voracek inked with the Flyers for 4 years $17 mil.
While yes it is a significant raise, it is completely deserved and it will definitely show in the next year or two. Voraceks potential ceiling is sky high and I expect him to really develop into a great puck moving set up man in the upcoming years. I see him starting this year on the top line with Claude Giroux. Imagine, if Claude could turn Scotty into a machine, imagine what he could do with a promising young winger.
Look for Voracek to hit 60-65 points this year.
Tomorrow: A Look at Danny Briere