Skip to content

Looking to make the leap: Shayne Gostisbehere

Aug 20, 2014, 11:05 AM EDT

Shayne Gostisbehere Getty Images

The Philadelphia Flyers are always known as a team loaded with veterans, so when one of their young players pops up on the national radar it becomes a bit of a big deal. When it’s a player who plays a position the Flyers could use help with, their hopes sometimes take on a life of their own.

Such is the case for Shayne Gostisbehere — though he’s already proven he can excel.

The 21-year-old defenseman is coming off a national championship with Union College. There, he was the best player for the Dutchmen and made Flyers faithful hope that they had their next big thing.

Last season,  Gostisbehere had nine goals and 34 points in 42 games. While he didn’t win the Hobey Baker Award — that went to Calgary Flames prospect Johnny Gaudreau — he was a finalist, and his performance in getting Union their first ever title (he had one goal and four assists in the Frozen Four) was exceptional as he was named Frozen Four MVP.

Shortly thereafter, the Flyers signed him to his first pro deal.

The Flyers snagged Gostisbehere in the third-round in 2012, 78th overall, and he’s anxious to show he can crack the roster right away. His up-tempo play and ability to control and carry the puck through all three zones could provide the Flyers with a weapon they don’t exactly have on the roster right now.

Take a look at what the Flyers are set to start the season with on the blueline: Mark Streit, Andrew MacDonald, Braydon Coburn, Luke Schenn, Nicklas Grossmann, Michael Del Zotto, and Nick Schultz are the veterans who should figure to make the team.

Kimmo Timonen could miss a big part of the season with blood clot problems and Schenn, Grossmann, Del Zotto and Schultz don’t inspire a lot of confidence. That leaves the door open for Gostisbehere to potentially force coach Craig Berube to make some difficult decisions in training camp.

The likelihood is Gostisbehere makes a good impression in camp and spends most of the season in Lehigh Valley of the AHL. That said, anyone who saw him play college hockey last season knows what he’s capable of, and perhaps a peek early on in Philly is all he needs to show he can be a NHL player sooner than later.

  1. xflyersx - Aug 20, 2014 at 11:21 AM


  2. cleflyersfan - Aug 20, 2014 at 11:32 AM

    I’m really looking forward to seeing ghost progress and make his way into the roster whether it’s this year or in 2 years.

  3. lowenni - Aug 20, 2014 at 11:33 AM

    He’s not gonna make it this year for the whole season, just cause the Philly blue line is deep. Not great, but deep. He’s not too big and a year in the AHL wouldn’t hurt anyways. He was so dominant in the frozen four on both sides of the ice and he’s gonna be great in the NHL too. That said, patience is a virtue, and he needs one more year. Flyers finally have something special coming up on their blue line.

    • mcphillthy - Aug 20, 2014 at 11:38 AM

      We have some nice defensive prospects coming up and we finally have a legit #1 goalie with mason. Thank God Paul Holmgren is not GM anymore. The flyers have a future again!

      • 76ersdoubletank - Aug 20, 2014 at 1:48 PM

        Wasn’t Holmgren still GM when they signed him?

      • ibieiniid - Aug 20, 2014 at 1:59 PM

        lol i was gonna say something, but I don’t disagree that “thank god paul holmgren is not GM anymore….” so i let it be.

      • mcphillthy - Aug 20, 2014 at 7:03 PM

        Maybe that was too broad for the simple minded… If Paul Holmgren was still the GM he would trade our youth and future away for some near retirement shell of a player. Does everyone understand better when i speak in little dummy terms? 😉

      • phillyphanatic77 - Aug 21, 2014 at 7:24 AM

        Mcphillthy- how are people still confusing the tenure of Bobby Clarke and Holmgren? Homer may have made some dumb decisions but he did not have to incessantly trade youth for age like Clarke. Seriously look through all his transactions and you will find very, very few of that variety. Did he deal picks? Sure, but trading top prospects for over the hill vets was Clarke’s calling card.

    • hockey412 - Aug 20, 2014 at 11:46 AM

      I agree. He’s going to need some size – college is one thing, sure there are some large players but nothing like the NHL. The power forwards in the NHL will just go right through him.

    • ibieiniid - Aug 20, 2014 at 1:15 PM

      careful now. you know how it makes phtjoey feel when you say the Flyers defense is deep…

  4. milkmemalkin - Aug 20, 2014 at 11:36 AM

    The announcers kept drooling over him during the Frozen Four but all I can think to myself is that all this kid will ever be is a poor mans Letang.

    • lowenni - Aug 20, 2014 at 12:24 PM

      And Letang will always be an oft-injured poor mans Drew Doughty or Erik Karlsson.

      • milkmemalkin - Aug 20, 2014 at 12:30 PM

        I concede that Doughty is much better than Letang, but Karlsson? Sure he can get points, but at least Letang plays SOME defense.

      • 19to77 - Aug 20, 2014 at 12:53 PM

        On the other hand, Karlsson’s also way more offensively productive than Letang. He’s scored 237 points in 315 games, compared to Letang’s 231 in 422 games. He’s also more durable. Barring the Matt Cooke Special he took last year he’s never missed extended time for anything. Letang hasn’t played more than 51 games in a season since 2010-11. Granted, the lockout’s factored in there, but even then he missed time – only played 35 out of 48 games.

      • lowenni - Aug 20, 2014 at 1:08 PM

        Get back to me when Letang scores 70+ points as a defenseman and then I’ll consider them equal. Karlsson is absolutely sick offensively and his defense isn’t as bad as people think, plus he skates so well he can get back in time when he makes mistakes…it’s at least not much worse than Letang’s.

      • hotlanta57 - Aug 20, 2014 at 1:18 PM

        Lowenni you are one of those people who thinks you can judge a defense mans worth by points. If you actually think that a defense man needs to score a high number of points to be considered good you are out of your mind. Prime example being Doughty

      • ibieiniid - Aug 20, 2014 at 1:26 PM

        what are you talking about, more than half his comment was about Karlsson’s deefnse.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Aug 20, 2014 at 12:57 PM

      Well besides the fact that you’re completely biased… I’d take a poor mans Letang anyday. This team is always in search of mobile puck movers and Gostisbehere fits the bill. Especially from a 3rd round pick. The comparison that most folks make is Krug and I’d say that could be pretty accurate.

  5. isphet71 - Aug 21, 2014 at 8:57 AM

    I just can’t take the guy’s last name seriously. It’s like half the script for “Scary Movie 12” –

    Idiot A: “Ghost is be here.”
    Idiot B: “We gon die!”

    Followed by 2 hours of a ghost and the two actors sustaining random trauma to the groin. And smoking weed.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kessel (1816)
  2. P. Kane (1341)
  3. P. Datsyuk (1189)
  4. S. Matthias (1146)
  5. M. Giordano (1047)