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Who was the most impressive Flyer in the playoffs? originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
Going End to End today are NBC Sports Philadelphia's Brooke Destra, Joe Fordyce and Jordan Hall.
The question: Which Flyers player impressed us most in the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs?
There were a handful of positives to take away from the playoffs for the Flyers and Ivan Provorov certainly made that list.
This was only the second playoff appearance of his career, but you would've thought he was a seasoned veteran. All season long, the duo of him and Matt Niskanen dominated the blue line. Once the playoffs began, though, Niskanen struggled more times than not and Provorov picked up the slack. Easily.
He not only continued his trend of eating minutes of ice time like it was nothing, there was also constant offensive contribution — as much as you can ask of a defenseman, at least. He finished the playoffs with eight points (three goals, five assists).
The most important goal of the playoffs came from Provorov in Game 6 against the Islanders in double overtime, after No. 9 logged 38:15 minutes of ice time and a whopping 52 shifts.
Impressed is an understatement — and he's just getting started.
My choice for most impressive Flyers player during these playoffs is a somewhat obvious one: goaltender Carter Hart.
This was Hart’s first-ever playoffs and they happened in August at a neutral site with no fans, but the young goaltender showed no signs of being intimidated by the moment. Need I say more? The league’s most tenured veterans were challenged by this bubble setup, so for a first-time playoff starter to do what Hart did is about as impressive as it gets.
Hart has yet to play a "normal" season, getting called up midseason in his rookie year, and then the pandemic and its effects on this season’s schedule, Hart has been through some trials early in his career.
The highlight of Hart’s playoff performance had to be back-to-back shutouts against the Canadiens, when he became only the third Flyers goaltender to record back-to-back shutouts in the playoffs and the first in 10 years. When you accomplish something in your first playoffs that only two other people in franchise history have ever done, and one of those people being Bernie Parent, you’ve got a bright future.
The Flyers have found their franchise goaltender and Hart did nothing but enhance that profile during these playoffs.
Kevin Hayes was the Flyers' best forward in the NHL's return-to-play 24-team tournament. You could even argue he was the team's best player.
The club's biggest offseason acquisition led the Flyers in points (13), assists (nine), shots (44) and plus-minus (plus-7).
With different linemates and situations, the 28-year-old center constantly made plays and dictated possession, while doing what he always does on the penalty kill and in the defensive zone.
And that was with some pressure of his first playoffs in a Flyers jersey. Hayes more than delivered in Year 1 of his seven-year contract.