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Derek Mathers signs with Flyers


Guest Irishjim
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Travis Hughes

There were

reports last week that the Flyers had signed 2011 draft pick Derek Mathers to an entry-level contract, and Mathers himself confirmed as much on Thursday. There's now some officially official confirmation as well. Mathers' OHL team, the Peterborough Petes, have announced that Mathers has indeed signed that contract with the club.

By rule of the collective bargaining agreement, Mathers' entry-level deal is three years in length. As a 2011 draft pick, he'll earn $925,000 in each of the three years he serves under this deal plus any bonuses he may earn. Mathers will likely remain in the OHL next season, thus allowing his contract to "slide," beginning in the 2013-14 season instead.

Mathers played nine games with the Adirondack Phantoms last season on an amateur tryout contract, racking up zero points and 26 penalty minutes in those games. In two seasons so far with the Petes, Mathers has compiled 348 penalty minutes and 32 points in 120 games. He fought 22 times in the OHL last season and twice in the AHL

according to HockeyFights.com.

star-divide.v5e9d7f1.jpg

Mathers is a goon, plain and simple, and in an era where these guys see ever-diminishing roles at the NHL level, it's frustrating when the Flyers waste precious contract space and an even more-precious draft pick on such a player. He might be the greatest enforcer to ever grace the organization, but we're of the strong belief that there's really not much need for that sort of player anymore. Not when <a class="sbn-auto-link" href="

http://www.sbnation.com/nhl/players/54774/jody-shelley" style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: transparent; color: rgb(190, 61, 18); text-decoration: none; font-weight: bold; ">Jody Shelley barely plays as it is.

Remember back to last September. A highly-skilled forward prospect named

Tomas Hyka attended Flyers camp and the team was even thinking about offering him a contract before learning, perhaps thanks to a BSH story, that the CBA didn't allow his signing. We later learned that the Flyers were thinking about drafting Hyka late in the 2011 draft, but instead opted to grab Mathers with their seventh round pick. As we wrote at the time:

In the grand scheme of things, missing out on an undrafted 18 year old isn't the end of the world. But what makes it absolutely infuriating (besides the fact that they didn't understand the details of the CBA again) is that the Flyers knew Hyka was on the board in the seventh round of the 2011 draft, they thought about drafting him, and then decided to take big goon Derek Mathers instead.

In [former Delco Times beat writer Anthony] SanFilippo's story yesterday, the Flyers source he quoted made a comparison between Hyka and Claude Giroux. Whether that's fair or not, the comparison was made by somebody in the organization. And they chose a pair of fists over that. How does this make any sense?

Now, Hyka is one of 105 top prospects who will join the 2012 NHL Draft Combine at the end of the month, and he'll almost certainly be drafted by somebody in the 2012 draft.

Is it fair to pin that on Mathers? No, absolutely not. Let's hope he becomes the best enforcer the team has ever seen now that he's signed. But this signing (and the original draft choice) is still a frustrating continuation of what's becoming a slowly extinct role in the NHL.

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There is room for "that sort of player" in the AHL, though...

Not that they necessarily needed to burn an NHL contract on "that sort of player" but I can see where picking the next heavyweight over the next Stefan Ruzicka in the 7th round might be attractive to the Flyers organization...

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Entirely fair points, and I remember liking Hyka too. Does Mathers kill penalties?

if he's up for just one game against pitt where he levels neal, malkin and crosby i'll consider if a roster space spent wisely. that would be a much bigger contribution than shelley's done in the last 2 years.

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Still 900K for a goon...

....really??????

So come 2013 he'll be making the same(actually a little more) as their rookie, that scored 24 goals his first season in Matt Read!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!

THAT IS CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!

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if he's up for just one game against pitt where he levels neal, malkin and crosby i'll consider if a roster space spent wisely. that would be a much bigger contribution than shelley's done in the last 2 years.

typical philly goon fan, doesnt actually know hockey. mathers will never SNIFF the nhl, while hyka will become a quality role player for another franchise, guaranteed. the 'broad st. bully' days will continue to kill the mentality of this team

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typical philly goon fan, doesnt actually know hockey. mathers will never SNIFF the nhl, while hyka will become a quality role player for another franchise, guaranteed. the 'broad st. bully' days will continue to kill the mentality of this team

oh my... we need a special sarcasm tag for you guy. you must have been tippin back on granpa's old cough medicine.

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@OccamsRazor

I'm gonna guess they don't sign him. Just a guess.They prolly like his bloodlines, but he fits the profile of the undersized WHL scorer who rarely make it to the NHL. He's apparently not even that fast or quick of a skater, which for a guy generously listed as 5'10" is gonna be a problem for him.

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