What Devils-Coyotes Taylor Hall trade means for Flyers


At least Taylor Hall is out of the Metropolitan Division and Eastern Conference.

That's how the Flyers can view Monday's trade, which saw the Devils send Hall and Blake Speers to the Coyotes in exchange for a 2020 first-round pick, 2021 third-round pick (conditional), Nick Merkley, Nate Schnarr and Kevin Bahl. New Jersey is reportedly retaining half ($3 million) of Hall's salary.

Obviously, it's unknown if the Flyers had any interest in Hall. The Flyers would have had to sacrifice quite a bit if they wanted the 28-year-old winger, who very well could be a rental as Hall can become an unrestricted free agent after this season.

The Flyers are currently undermanned at forward without Scott Laughton (groin), Tyler Pitlick (concussion), Oskar Lindblom (Ewing's sarcoma diagnosis), Travis Konecny (concussion), Michael Raffl (broken right pinkie finger) and Nolan Patrick (migraine disorder).

But the Flyers are in solid position at 17-11-5 and they'll have a better idea of what they might need when the schedule gets closer to the Feb. 24 trade deadline and the market is more flexible.

The Devils have disappointed, sitting in last place of the Metropolitan Division with a 10-17-5 record. New Jersey has already fired its head coach and is scoring the NHL's second-fewest goals per game (2.38), while allowing the second most (3.47).

The positive for the Flyers is that they now have to see Hall only more time this season when they visit the Coyotes on Jan. 4. Hall, who was the Devils' leading scorer (25 points) and won the 2017-18 Hart Memorial Trophy, has 23 points (10 goals, 13 assists) in 19 career matchups with the Flyers.

The Flyers play New Jersey Feb. 6 and March 28, when the postseason race will be hotter, and at least they won't have to worry about Hall.

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