VOORHEES, N.J. – A smiling Morgan Frost was sitting at his locker when several media members approached.
“Got a couple goals for me?’’ he said with a chuckle.
The Flyers forward was in pretty good spirits, considering his team is mired in a six-game (0-4-2) winless streak and he seems more than a bit snakebitten.
For example, take Saturday night’s 5-4 shootout loss in Montreal.
Frost was selected as the Flyers’ No. 2 shooter. He comes down, shoots and the puck goes off the right post, then the left post and finally lands harmlessly in the blue paint.
Frost continues to remain upbeat even though he hasn’t scored a goal since opening night (when he actually scored a pair).
At Monday morning’s skate at the Flyers Training Center, Frost said he still feels confident he can break through at some point.
“A lot of it is when you get an opportunity, you want to take advantage of it,’’ Frost said. “Obviously we have so many injuries, everyone’s kind of moved up a bit. Being put in the positions I’m being put in right now, I want to make an impression. Hopefully try and keep a spot when some of those guys come back.’’
Coach John Tortorella even gave Frost some first-line time in Saturday night’s game. Center Kevin Hayes was moved to the second line and actually was scheduled to play wing in Monday night’s game against the Calgary Flames at the Wells Fargo Center.
“I’m trying to keep doing what I’m doing except not hit two posts at once,’’ Frost kidded. “And try to score more on breakaways because I’ve had my fair share this season.’’
Asked if that double-doink in the shootout was a first for his career, he nodded.
“I didn’t even know I shot it hard enough for it to go boom-boom,’’ he said. “Honestly, when I shot it I thought it went in. Pretty weird play there.’’
What would a goal do for his confidence?
“It would do a lot, I think,’’ he said. “Maybe I’m getting a little unlucky right now. So just keep working hard and maybe you will get rewarded.’’
Frost said he thought the Montreal game was one of his better ones.
“I think when you do a lot of good things in the game you get rewarded,’’ he said. “I was excited I got chosen to go (in the shootout). It just didn’t go my way.’’
Tortorella gives the impression Frost is close to breaking through.
“He’s making more plays,’’ the coach said. “He’s played better. If he earns the time I’m going to give it to him. His biggest strength is his playmaking. But there are other habits in his game that need to change.’’
>Hockey Fights Cancer Night
As part of a league-wide program, the Flyers will hold their annual Hockey Fights Cancer Night on Monday night. Coaches and players alike say they are gratified the NHL is providing resources for this very worthy cause.
Both Tortorella and Hayes said they were deeply touched when a number of cancer-afflicted youngsters were part of a HFC ceremony on Saturday night at the Bell Centre.
“That was amazing,’’ said Hayes, whose parents are both cancer survivors. “Cancer is a horrible, horrible disease. I think all of us have been affected by it in a way. It’s a disease that doesn’t seem to be going away. I think it’s a nice gesture by the league that every team do nights like tonight, to show our support.
“I mean it hits home in this organization, with Oskar (Lindblom, the former Flyer who waged a battle against a rare form of bone cancer). . .it makes you realize our problems aren’t too serious compared to what a lot of people go through everyday. To see those kids on the ice, you’re stupid if you think your problems are more important than theirs. Both my parents had it. There are way more important things than the problems we have in our room.’’
Tortorella is of a same mind. Events like this put the relationship between hockey and real life in perspective.
“It was emotional for me the other night in Montreal,’’ Tortorella said. “We’re gearing up for winning and losing and all that and the pressures that go with it. I look at these kids, in real-life situations really haven’t been given a fair chance. They’re fighting like hell. So you’re right, it does put (things) in perspective.
“Montreal was very touching to me as to how they did it. Starting players were getting kids to come on the ice. I thought it was very well done. That one really hit home with me.’’
>Konecny skates but won’t play vs. Calgary
Travis Konecny, who suffered an injury to his right hand during a collision with Boston’s David Pastrnak in Thursday night’s 4-1 loss to the Bruins at TD Garden, was observed skating on Monday morning but the Flyers had yet to provide a medical update. Tortorella confirmed TK would not play against the Flames.
Also skating were James van Riemsdyk (fractured index finger) and Cam Atkinson (upper-body injury). They have yet to practice.
Carter Hart was scheduled to start in goal against the Flames. . .Tanner Laczynski returned to the Flyers after a two-game stint with the Phantoms. Defenseman Egor Zamula was assigned to the Phantoms. . .Tortorella said with all the injuries, Kieffer Bellows might get some power-play time.