According to multiple European sources, the Flyers are interested in Swedish right-winger Mario Kempe and have presented him with a contract.
“When my agent, Claes Elefalk, told me that, I was happy,” 21-year-old Kempe told the Swedish media last week. “I’m ready to attract the NHL, that’s every hockey player’s dream. Now, I have not seen their (Philly’s) contract proposal itself, but I’ll get in touch with Claes and discuss it further.”
Despite clear interest by the Flyers’ organization, prospects Mario Kempe and Denis Bodrov will not attend any sort of training camp this season.
The Flyers made two administrative moves on Thursday, hiring Jeff Reese as the official goaltending instructor and naming Phantoms’ coach John Paddock the assistant General Manager.
Reese, who was formally with the Tampa Bay organization,was rumored to be offered the job after long-time goalie coach Reggie Lemelin was let go by the team in late June.
“Jeff brings a strong presence,” said Holmgren. “I have known Jeff for many years from our days together in Hartford. I think he is an ideal fit for our team moving forward. He has some fresh ideas and we are excited to have Jeff on board.”
Paddock will stay in charge of the Phantoms’ coaches, but will now help current General Manager Paul Holmgren with duties involving the AHL and entry-level prospects, likely leaving assistant coach Kjell Samuelsson in charge as head coach.
“In addition to helping with the day to day operation of our team, John will oversee the Phantoms in Glens Falls, interacting with the coaching staff there and following the development of our young players,” said Holmgren in the official press release.
Due to the Phantoms moving to Glen Falls, NY, Holmgren needs someone to keep executive tabs on the team, which is likely why John was hired.
“I’m excited to have John, he is a very good hockey man,” said Holmgren. “He has been a General Manager and a head coach in the NHL, and has done a lot of things in the League. His experience and expertise is going to bring a lot to the table for the Flyers.”
On Monday, the greenest Flyers gather in Voorhees, N.J., to begin another week-long conditioning camp. And although camp this year is less exciting than its recent predecessors, it still makes for some interesting story lines.
Multiple European sources are reporting that the Flyers have signed 20-year old Swedish speedster Mario Kempe to an AHL try out. Although not considered a top prospect in the system, Kempe is high on the Flyers’ radar and has thrilled in the few training camps he attended.
Reminding many NHL scouts as a young Mikael Renberg, Kempe is one of the quickest players on the Flyers’ farm and plays a downhill style. Despite good size (6-foot-0, 180 lbs), decent hands and adept passing skills, Kempe is notoriously inconsistent, which is keeping him from being a serious player in the Flyers’ system. Matched with Claude Giroux in prospect camp, Kempe needs to improve his two-way game if he wants to be in consideration of any future call up to the big club, something Phantoms coach John Paddock may be able to help with.
Kempe, a fifth round pick in 2007, played two seasons in Canadian juniors before going back to Sweden to further his development. Playing for Rogle Angelholm in the low scoring Swedish Elite League, he scored two goals and eight assists in 30 games.