Welcome to the Official Site of the Philadelphia Flyers Official Facebook of the Philadelphia Flyers Official Twitter of the Philadelphia Flyers Official Instagram of the Philadelphia Flyers Official LinkedIn of the Philadelphia Flyers
 

PROSPECT PROFILE: TAYLOR LEIER

Leier impressing the Flyers, even if he flies under the radar elsewhere

Tuesday, 07.09.2013 / 10:52 PM / News
By Anthony SanFilippo  - Philadelphia Flyers Inside Reporter
X
Share with your Friends


PROSPECT PROFILE: TAYLOR LEIER

VOORHEES, N.J. – I sent a text message to Flyers left wing prospect Taylor Leier. At least, I thought I did.

When the response came back that I had the wrong number, I apologized for getting it wrong.

The person on the other end of the phone, whoever they may be, sent another text:

“You don’t mind me asking,” the text said. “But you said you were from PhiladelphiaFlyers.com, so when you said ‘Hi Taylor...’ you wouldn’t have been talking about Taylor Leier would you?”

“Yes,” I replied.

“You mean Taylor Leier of the Portland Winterhawks,” the person asked.

“Well… yes,” I replied. “He’s a draft pick of the Flyers, but he does play junior hockey for Portland.”

“You mean, this was once his phone number?” The questions kept coming.

I wasn’t 100 percent sure. I had never called Taylor before, but it was a number I had for him. It was possible that I had a bad number, but I was none the wiser…

“Yes. I guess it used to be his number,” I said.

“Really,” that was one text. Then another: “OMG that is SOOOOOOOOO awesome!”

I finally caught up with Leier (his email address, thankfully, was correct) and when we finally talked in person Tuesday, I told him about the text message exchange?

“No way,” was Leier’s first response. “That’s unreal. But, I guess it’s kind of cool that whoever that person is knows who I am and is a fan.”

It was an understated reaction from an under-the-radar player. But maybe Leier deserves a little more recognition than he’s gotten so far… well, at least publicly.

Leier may not be the most sexy prospect name for the Flyers, but he's definitely opening eyes within the organization and is climbing up the internal rankings as a scoring winger.

“We think highly of him,” said Flyers Director of Player Development Ian Laperriere. “I really like this kid. He’s got a lot of skill and a lot of speed. He’s on a real good path right now for us and we’re really excited about him.”

It’s not just Laperriere who likes him either.

Mark Greig, the former Flyer who now works for the team as an amateur scout focusing primarily on the Western Hockey League, has watched him for a couple years now and sees a big difference just from last year.

“He was a little bit of a late bloomer,” said Greig, referring to the fact that Leier didn’t play Canadian Junior Hockey as a 16-year old. “You could see that he could skate and had some skill last year and we liked him enough to draft him. But he took a major step this past season and now he’s starting to open some eyes.”

Leier had a fine season for Portland. After missing the beginning of the season recovering from off-season abdominal surgery in Philadelphia, Leier recovered to score 27 goals and add 35 assists for 62 points in 64 regular season games for the Winterhawks.

In the playoffs, Leier notched nine goals and seven assists for 16 points in 21 games as Portland won the WHL championship.

Leier was at the top of his game and was playing in the Memorial Cup with Portland in his hometown of Sakatoon, Saskatchewan when he took a hit to the head from Saskatoon Blades defenseman Dalton Thrower, suffering a concussion and ending his season.

“I’m kind of taking it easy here [at Development Camp],” Leier said. “Lappy and the trainers have told me to take it easy. I feel fine, but I’m not going to do any battle drills or anything. It’s July. I don’t want to catch an errant elbow to the jaw or something, and then all of the sudden I have a recurrence of the concussion. I don’t want that to happen.”

Nor do the Flyers, who feel like Leier, a fourth round pick (No. 117 overall) in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, is progressing nicely and still has a pretty high ceiling.

Leier knows how far he’s come, but knows the path ahead is still a long one to be able to fulfill his dream.

“I thought I had a good season, but it wasn’t as good as I’d like it to be,” said Leier, who was almost on a point-per-game pace last season. “I really struggled with that abdominal injury, and even after the surgery, I still felt it all season. It was tough to deal with, but I pushed through. I had good stretches, but I feel like I could do more and be better.

“I’m hoping I can help my team repeat as WHL champions and I can continue to improve my game to get closer to playing professionally.”

If he does, it won’t be long before more than just some random texter in Western Canada recognizes his name.

To contact Anthony SanFilippo, email asanfilippo@comcast-spectacor.com or follow him on Twitter @AnthonySan37

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Giroux 82 28 58 7 86
J. Voracek 82 23 39 11 62
W. Simmonds 82 29 31 -4 60
S. Hartnell 78 20 32 11 52
M. Streit 82 10 34 3 44
B. Schenn 82 20 21 0 41
M. Read 75 22 18 -4 40
S. Couturier 82 13 26 1 39
V. Lecavalier 69 20 17 -16 37
K. Timonen 77 6 29 5 35
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Mason 33 18 7 .917 2.50
R. Emery 9 12 2 .903 2.96
Privacy Policy | AdChoices | California Privacy Rights | Contact Us | Advertise Employment | NHL.com Terms of Use

Philadelphiaflyers.com is the official Web site of the Philadelphia Flyers. Philadelphia Flyers and philadelphiaflyers.com are trademarks of Philadelphia Flyers, L.P. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2014 Philadelphia Flyers, L.P. and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.