Flyers sign Matvei Michkov, make small moves as free agency begins

Flyers sign Matvei Michkov, make small moves as free agency begins

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While the Nashville Predators signed three of the best players available (Steven Stamkos, Jonathan Marchessault and Brady Skjei) during the first day of free agency on Monday, the salary-cap-strapped Philadelphia Flyers made only small moves — aside from signing promising right winger Matvei Michkov.

Michkov, 19, signed a three-year entry-level contract with an annual salary cap of $950,000.

The Flyers hope he’s as good as expected.

“I am extremely excited to officially become part of the Flyers family,” Michkov said in a statement released by the team. “It has been a dream of mine since I was a kid to play in the NHL.”

He thanked the Flyers management for their “confidence” in him and said he “will do everything possible to meet expectations.”

Briere seemed overwhelmed with joy. He said that when the Flyers drafted Michkov in the first round last year, he never expected the creative winger to get out of his three-year KHL contract so quickly and join the Flyers.

“He’s not going to the AHL, let’s put it that way,” Briere joked.

Michkov was not among the players on the Flyers’ development camp roster. The camp begins Tuesday in Voorhees and is free and open to the public.

Speedy center Jeff Luchanko, who was selected first overall by the Flyers in Friday’s draft, is among the potential players at training camp.

In another development, the Flyers have signed 32-year-old winger Garrett Hathaway to a two-year contract worth $2.4 million per year, effective from 2025-26.

“His playing style and professionalism had a huge impact on our group last season,” Briere said, adding that Hathaway “embodies the standard our team wanted to build both on and off the ice.”

The Philadelphia Flyers also signed defenseman Erik Johnson to a one-year, $1 million contract. In 17 games with the Flyers last season, he had three points and was a minus-9.

The 36-year-old Johnson will be an experienced player on the team’s young defense, said Briere, who was once Johnson’s teammate at Colorado.

As for potential trades, Briere said, “We’re still trying,” but admitted that “if it doesn’t happen in the next week, chances are what you see is the same as what will happen in September at training camp.”

With the indestructible Michkov.

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