Should the Flyers Pursue Rutger McGroarty? An In-depth Trade Analysis

The Philadelphia Flyers might trade for Rutger McGroarty, a skilled forward from the Winnipeg Jets. This trade could help the Flyers, but it’s complicated and uncertain.

Key Takeaways:

  • Rutger McGroarty is a highly skilled, versatile forward with significant potential to boost the Flyers’ roster.
  • The Winnipeg Jets are open to trading McGroarty’s rights, presenting a potential opportunity for the Flyers.
  • Despite the potential benefits, a trade for McGroarty is currently unlikely due to various complicating factors.

Trade Talks Surface Around McGroarty’s Future with the Jets

The Philadelphia Flyers might want to trade for Rutger McGroarty’s signing rights.

Elliotte Friedman mentioned on his 32 Thoughts podcast that the Winnipeg Jets are discussing trading McGroarty.

While neither McGroarty’s team nor the Jets have officially talked about a trade, Friedman said, “His name has come up in trade discussions. The Jets have discussed trading, and other teams have discussed acquiring McGroarty’s rights.

The Jets have McGroarty’s rights for two more years. Even so, McGroarty, from Lincoln, Nebraska, chose to go back to the University of Michigan for his junior year in the 2024-25 season.

Rutger McGroarty: From USNTDP to World Junior Champion

McGroarty was picked 14th overall from the United States National Team Development Program (USNTDP) in the 2022 NHL Draft.

He led the U.S. team to a gold medal at the 2024 World Junior Championship, winning 6-2 over Sweden.

According to DobberProspects, McGroarty is a “highly skilled, competitive, versatile forward who can play on the wing and center…has the size, strength, and leadership qualities to go along with the scoring ability and hockey IQ…[can] contribute to the powerplay and penalty kill.

Flyers’ Interest in Strengthening Center Position

Getting McGroarty could help the Flyers a lot because they need more centers.

Flyers GM Danny Briere talked about this need during a pre-draft press conference, saying, “Teams want centers. They’re a lot tougher to find. So, you got to respect that as well when you’re making your pick, and you’re evaluating the players…[and] let’s face it, we’re lacking centers coming up throughout the organization. We haven’t tried to hide that, it’s a reality.

No specific teams have been named as wanting McGroarty, but Briere likely sees the chance to acquire such a talented young center.

For now, the Flyers are focused on the upcoming draft, but fans should keep an eye on McGroarty in the future.

McGroarty Eyes NHL Future Amid Trade Speculations

Recently, it came out that McGroarty wanted to make it to the NHL, so he decided to return to Michigan.

McGroarty is good friends with former Flyers prospect Cutter Gauthier, who faced a similar situation before being traded to Anaheim. Gauthier stopped talking to the Flyers before his trade, and McGroarty seems to be doing the same.

NHL insider Elliotte Friedman said on his “32 Thoughts” podcast that McGroarty’s name “has come up in trade discussions” as he tries to secure a spot on the Jets’ NHL roster or another team.

A source told the Winnipeg Free Press that McGroarty is “an NHLer. They will regret it,” showing that many believe McGroarty is ready for the NHL.

He had 52 points in 36 NCAA games this year, proving his readiness.

Trade Hurdles for Acquiring McGroarty

While McGroarty would be an ideal target for the Flyers, the situation is complex.

The public nature of Winnipeg’s situation with McGroarty might affect the potential return in a trade.

Given the volatility and McGroarty’s relationship with Gauthier, a trade between the Flyers and Jets is currently unlikely.