Flyers hope to snap scoring slump with Weal call-up, line shake

Flyers hope to snap scoring slump with Weal call-up, line shake

Trying to awaken their sleepy offense, the Flyers promoted speedy forward Jordan Weal from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms and changed three of their lines at Friday’s practice in Voorhees.

The Flyers have scored one goal, total, in their last three games, and have managed just 13 goals over their last 10 games, so the changes weren’t surprising.

“If you don’t get results, you have to shake it up,” said right winger Jake Voracek, who will be on Weal’s line during Saturday’s matinee against the physical San Jose Sharks at the Wells Fargo Center.

Weal, 24, was second in the AHL with 47 points this season. He had played primarily center with the Phantoms but will be used as a left winger Saturday.

“He’s a skilled player who creates offense and generates offense,” coach Dave Hakstol said, adding that has also received “very good feedback” on Weal’s defensive play. “. . .We’re excited to see him in the lineup.”

A little over a year ago, the Flyers acquired Weal and a third-round 2016 draft pick (left winger Carsen Twarynski) in the deal that sent Luke Schenn and Vinny Lecavalier to Los Angeles. Weal played in just four games with the Flyers last season and had no points.

Hakstol, whose team has been outscored by a 9-1 margin is even-strength situations over the last five games, said Weal is now “at the top of his game. He’s a very confident player and has been playing very well in the American Hockey Legaue. I think that’s the ideal time to be able to come in here. If you compare that to the situation last year from the time he joined us from L.A., he hadn’t played in quite a while at that time, and he never did have a chance to get into any kind of rhythm – other than practice – when he was with us.”

Hakstol called it “the exact 180-dereee different situation now. He’s in a great rhythm and playing at the top of his game, and I think he can make the transition here.”

Weal downplayed the switch to wing.

“Hockey’s hockey. Just got to go out there and play,” he said. “I get to play with some great players. Got to go out and work with them and create some offense.”

Weal, who grew up in Vancouver and hopes to make the trip there with the team next week, will be on a line with center Sean Couturier and Voracek.

In other lineup changes, Brayden Schenn is being shifted from center to left wing and will move to the top line, which will include Giroux and Wayne Simmonds; and left winger Michael Raffl will drop from the first to third line, which will include Nick Cousins (moving from left wing to center) and Matt Read.

Hakstol said he liked Schenn at center, “but I’m just putting that line back together again. That’s a line that’s clicked offensively. Maybe there’s a little bit of a spark there with him on the left side.”

scarchidi@phillynews.com

@BroadStBull www.philly.com/flyersblog

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Published at Sat, 11 Feb 2017 00:21:47 +0000

Categories: Flyers

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