The Philadelphia Flyers might not play another game this season. While this would be bad news for the whole team, it would be especially disappointing for star Travis Konecny, who was in the midst of a career year.
Konecny had made incredible progress in the 2019-20 season, his fourth in the NHL. The former first-round pick quickly became one of the Flyers’ top offensive threats and had been putting up the best stats of his career. Unfortunately, with the remainder of the season in jeopardy, he may not get the chance to add on to those stats any further.
Konecny’s 2019-20 Season
Konecny got off to an extremely hot start this season. He recorded at least one point in 14 of the Flyers’ first 17 games. As the season went on, he continued his offensive production and never went more than three consecutive games without recording a point. Moreover, Konecny procured six three-point games and another seven two-point games this season.
In total, through 66 games, he had scored 24 goals and recorded 37 assists. His 24 goals already matched the career-high he set in each of the past two seasons. Furthermore, his 37 assists became a new career-high and surpassed the 25 assists he recorded last season.
Despite missing three games to a concussion he suffered back in December, Konecny was leading the Flyers in points prior to the stoppage of play. He was on pace to record roughly 73 points this season.
If the Flyers do not play another regular-season game this year, Konecny will finish the season as the team’s leader in points. That would make this season the first since 2009-10 that someone not named Claude Giroux or Jakub Voracek earned this honor.
The rest of the league took note of Konecny’s rise to stardom this season. For this time in his career, Konecny was selected to represent the Flyers in the All-Star Game. As the only representative from the team, Konecny earned three assists in the Metropolitan Division’s loss to the Atlantic Division.
A Bright Future Ahead
While Konecny must be pleased with his performance this season, he must also wonder just how impressive his stats would have been in a full season. Perhaps he would have eclipsed 30 goals this season, and he definitely would have notched at least 40 assists. Instead, he’ll possibly have to wait for next season to try to achieve these milestones.
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Fortunately, Konecny is just 23 years old and still has his prime playing years ahead of him. As players like Giroux and Voracek continue to age on the other side of 30, Konecny could become the Flyers’ face of the franchise. With this changing of the guard, Konecny can expect increased playing time and perhaps an eventual move to the top line.
His average time on ice (ATOI) has already begun to grow in each of his four seasons in the league.
This season, Konecny’s ATOI grew by more than 90 seconds from last season. Based on well he played this season, it is just a matter of time before he joins Giroux and Sean Couturier in the 18 to 20-minute ATOI club. As Konecny gets more playing time, he can expect his offensive numbers to only improve.
The good news for Flyer fans is that they will be seeing a lot of Konecny on the ice for years to come. Prior to the start of this season, the Flyers signed him to a new six-year contract worth $33 million. By signing him through the 2024-25 season, the Flyers made it clear that he is a core part of the franchise’s future.
Although the Flyers and the NHL may have a somewhat murky future this season, Konecny’s future has never looked brighter.
All stats came from Hockey Reference.
Covering the Flyers for THW | Lifelong Islanders fan, but promise to become a little more sympathetic to the Flyers | Also a 4X marathon-runner | UChicago ’19