Philadelphia Flyers prospect Samuel Morin's future with the club is now being put in jeopardy as the defenseman is expected to be sidelined until at least early 2019 due to a right knee injury.
Morin tore his ACL while playing for the AHL's Lehigh Valley Phantoms in the playoffs on May 9 and is expected to miss many months of action. The 2013 first-round pick is expected to undergo surgery this week and Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said Morin is “probably out until February.”
The 22-year-old struggled with a recurring lower-body injury, which limited him to just 17 games in the regular season between the Flyers and Phantoms and three playoffs contests. He was unable to put his name on the scoresheet in two games with the Flyers this season and tallied one goal and seven points in 15 contests with the Phantoms.
The good sign for Morin came in one of Hextall's comments, as the Flyers general manager said it would be unfair to label Morin as an injury-prone player despite all the missed time in the past year.
“People tend to forget that Sam’s been a healthy player for the most part in his career prior to that,” Hextall told the Philadelphia Courier-Post.
“We’re writing this off as — he had a tough year, there’s no doubt about it in terms of the injuries. We don’t think any less of Sam than we did in September of last year. We still have high hopes for Sam and we know he’s gonna turn into a good player for us.”
The bad news in all of this: Morin, who made the Flyers out of training camp this season but only managed to play one game before he got sent down, is a restricted free agent this summer after playing out the final year of his three-year entry-level contract.
“I need to get re-signed. There’s a lot of stuff going on, but I’m a really confident guy and I think I can play in the NHL when I’m healthy,” Morin said. “I just need to get a little bit of luck on my side and I think I will. It’s been a long process for me, a long road, but I’m gonna make it.”
The road ahead is surely a long one for Morin...