Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Morin signed to entry-level deal, might see early action

The Flyers joined several other teams this week in offering their top rookie draft pick, Samuel Morin, his first NHL contract. Under collective bargaining agreement rules, Morin's contract is structured to three years for hte maximum $925,000 base salary. Signing and performance bonuses, if attained, would take the deal above the poverty line and to an annual average of $1.425 million. That would begin when Morin makes the big club, and so it won't be for a while. Several of the 6-foot-6 Morin's teammates were impressed by his plan and composure with the puck Monday night in his NHL preseason debut. He earned a lot of minutes in both regular shifts and on power plays. But he's a long way from being an NHL presence. Physically, Morin has a lot of filling out to do, and experience-wise, NHL defensemen naturally develop at a slower pace. The Flyers have a two-year "slide" period where they can keep Morin for the first 10 games of the season and then send him back to his junior hockey team. That will almost certainly happen in October (and if it doesn't, it would say more about how they feel about their defense than anything else), and would probably happen again next year. Morin needs a couple of more junior years before coming to training camp truly ready to make an impact in the big leagues. At least he has shown flashes of being able to do just that in the future.


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