September 23 Philadelphia Inquirer:
“A day after the Flyers opened the preseason with a 4-3 shoot-out win against New Jersey, coach Peter Laviolette was asked Wednesday about his defensemen. Specifically, where one of his players was on the depth chart.
Still early in the preseason, Laviolette dodged the question.
“Is there that much of a difference between two and five on our team right now? I don’t know. Maybe not,” Laviolette said. “But what we want to do is put together a defensive unit that’s tough to play against.”
That much was made clear in the off-season with the acquisitions of Andrej Meszaros, Sean O’Donnell, and Matt Walker. That will pose a welcome problem when it comes time to reducing the roster for the regular season, Laviolette admitted.
“They’re good decisions to have,” Laviolette said of his stacked blue line. “It forces players to make sure they’re on top of their game, make sure they’re playing well. I think that’s the best way to approach it: Keep an open mind and put the best players on the ice, the ones that are playing the best.”
Meszaros, 24, and O’Donnell, 38, could be the third defensive pair for the Flyers. After one preseason game, Laviolette said he liked what he saw from the 6-foot-2, 220-pound Meszaros.
“He looked good. Strong. He played strong,” Laviolette said. “He’s got a big presence out there. He passes the puck well. He’s got a heavy shot, defends well.””
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