More than a few Flyers fans must have allowed themselves a little private smile when Brayden Schenn lifted the Stanley Cup above his head last year.
Not only were they happy to see the former Flyer experience the ultimate success with St. Louis, they were also content knowing the trade which sent Schenn to the Blues brought talented prospect Morgan Frost in return.
Frost, who just turned 21 in May, became the Flyers’ second first-round pick (27th overall) in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft (Nolan Patrick was the Flyers’ first pick at No. 2 overall).
At the time, ex-general manager Ron Hextall said he made the Schenn trade specifically because he was targeting Frost.
So expectations have been high and Frost has worked hard to keep up to those aspirations.
This past season was a breakthrough of sorts, but also a bit of a rollercoaster ride.
It got off to a blazing start: After a call-up for a game at Florida on Nov. 19, Frost scored goals in his first two games.
However, over the next 16 games the centerman hit a lot of posts but nothing went in. He was returned to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, got called up for a pair of games in February, then went back down to complete his season in Allentown.
Four months later he’s back at the Skate Zone in Voorhees, N.J., looking to continue his progress. Unless there’s an injury in the Stanley Cup playoffs, it’s unlikely he will see action. Yet it’s all part of the process.
He’s more than willing to talk about what he took away from this past season.
“A lot of little things but (foremost) learning to be a pro,’’ Frost said during an interview with the Flyers’ public relations department on Wednesday “Just being around older guys. You see how seriously they take their bodies and their training. I just tried to learn as much as I could and soak it up as much as I could. Hopefully I can get to that level one day.’’
The Aurora, Ontario, Canada native was able to stay in shape during the pause by way of some help from a family member.
His mom owns a gymnasium and gave him a key so he could work out on his own.
“The first month was kind of hard,’’ Frost explained. “I couldn’t really leave the house. Just did some little stuff at home and once I was able to get out a little bit. . .I was able to do more stuff.
“She (Mrs. Frost) gave me a key and my trainer would meet me there. We would do one-on-one stuff. Keep it safe, keep a bit of distance. It was nice for my mom to do that and let me use the gym.’’
While 21st birthdays are a pretty big deal, health regulations prevented Frost from having any kind of major celebration.
“Had a couple buddies over,’’ he said. “I think five or six was the limit. They came to my garage and we just kind of hung out for the night. Kept our distance.’’
There are a lot of those kinds of stories these days – young people missing out on live high school and college graduation ceremonies and so forth.
Frost can empathize with his brethren.
“Those are the kind of memories that you keep with you forever,’’ he said. “I always remember my proms and ending high school and stuff. It’s definitely sad to see some people couldn’t have that same experience that I was able to but I think some people kind of made do and had their own little thing. I know it’s not the same. I feel bad for those people.’’