The wait is finally over. Brayden Schenn was recalled from the Adirondack Phantoms today and could make his debut against the Washington Capitals on Thursday. Schenn was sent to the Phantoms to remove a 1.75 million dollar bonus from his salary which would have counted against the cap if he had played all eighty-two of the Flyer's regular season games.
In his brief stint with the Adirondack Phantoms, Schenn has four goals and four assists in four games. To make cap room for Schenn to come up, the Flyers sent fourth liners Zac Rinaldo and Harry Zolnierczyk to the Phantoms. Schenn will look to prove that he has what it takes to help the Flyers add to an impressive 4-0-1 start this year.
The forward line combinations based on who the Flyers sent down to the minors would look something like this:
Couturier-Talbot-Nodl/Shelly (Shelly just returned from suspension)
I believe that Couturier is being moved to the fourth line because he has exceptional defensive ability and the reduced ice time would keep him fresh for his major role penalty kill unit. Hartnell in theory could be moved down, but I have a really hard time seeing that given his contract and ability. Schenn is better offensively than he is defensively at this stage and so the Flyers would want him to take a higher role than a checking line player.
The Flyers have proven that they have what it takes to win without Schenn in the line up, so Schenn is not certain to stay up with the team just because he was recalled. He will have to earn his spot; the increased competition is good for the Flyers. Matt Read and Sean Couturier have already shown exceptional play as they battle for roster spots, so I hope that Schenn will do the same.
Not matter what ends up happening with the line-up, I am excited to Brayden Schenn get his first shot with this team.