Philadelphia Flyers Set Their Sights on NCAA Forward Stephane Da Costa

February 19th, 2011 by Mike Pantaleone Leave a reply »

The Philadelphia Flyers were set to finally have a first round draft pick this year after trading away their last two to acquire Chris Pronger from the Ducks. Because of that, General Manager Paul Holmgren had to find young talent elsewhere to fill the holes that it had created.

This year did not prove to be any different, as once again Paul Holmgren traded yet another first round pick to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Kris Versteeg, making the Flyers an even tougher team to beat. Since the Flyers have no first round pick again this year, they will need to find more young talent elsewhere, and that is exactly what they have already begun doing.

According to Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News, Paul Holmgren has already begun the process of finding more young talent to sign in the offseason. Frank reports that the Flyers have set their sights on Stephane Da Costa, a 21-year-old forward out of Merrimack College.

Da Costa has 81 points in 61 games at the NCAA level, and has consistent numbers with the other teams he has played for as well. There are reports that other teams have an interest in Da Costa too, and teams like the Boston Bruins and the Nashville Predators may also make a serious run at him, creating a bidding war for his services.

“I think we’re one of a lot of teams that would like to have him,” Holmgren said. “It’s a different avenue. We’ve traded a lot of draft picks over the last few years. Whether we had draft picks or not, it’s a fertile ground to follow.”

Holmgren has been known to get his man, as he was successful in signing four out of the five college kids that he and the organization had set their sights on last year. That doesn’t even include Sergei Bobrovsky, who generated much interested from various teams last year. For those of you who don’t know who I’m talking about, take a look at the Phantoms roster.

It’s good to see that Holmgren knows the value of trading these first round picks, and even though some fans may not like it, Paul has made a conscious effort to really make this team the best it can be. He is doing his best to fill the voids left by trading away picks, and he’s done a good job so far. 

Da Costa would bring even more offensive depth, and if his numbers at the NCAA level mean anything, he could be a very intriguing player to watch. Will Holmgren get his man? We’ll see. 

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