During the first period of Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final, the Philadelphia Flyers announced they traded a fifth-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft to the Winnipeg Jets for forward Kevin Hayes.
While he most recently suited up for the Jets, Hayes was a staple in the New York Rangers lineup for four and a half years. In layman’s terms, he’s a Vigneault guy.
Hayes had a career year in 2018-19 where he posted 19 goals and 36 assists for a total of 55 points. This is generally the case when players are on the last year of their contracts – on July 1 Hayes becomes an unrestricted free agent.
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) June 4, 2019
I imagine the Flyers will reach a deal with Hayes in the near future. Examples of players the Flyers traded for on expired contracts are Ilya Bryzgalov, Scott Hartnell and Kimmo Timonen. I’ll be shocked if they don’t reach an agreement before then.
One of the question marks going into the offseason is finding the next second line center for the team, it’s clear that Hayes was the target for that role. If Hayes can build on last season this will be an excellent move and a step in the right direction for the franchise.