ALLENTOWN-- It's easy to get carried away by what transpires in preseason games because results-oriented observations can cloud judgment.
It's why new coach Dave Hakstol has been stressing the importance of an entire body of work, day-by-day, throughout training camp.
But, there are plenty of things to take away from Monday night's split-squad, preseason-opening 5-3 win over the New York Islanders at the PPL Center (which, by the way, is a tremendous arena).
Here are a few thoughts...
Travis Konecny will make Ron Hextall think
Konecny said after the game his goal hasn't changed, that he wants to be with the Flyers as quickly as possible.
"That's been my goal since I was a kid," he said. "When I have the chance to make the NHL, I want to give myself the best opportunity. That's what I did coming into this camp and I'm going to continue to work hard."
Evgeny Medvedev is an upgrade
Not much was known about the veteran KHL defenseman when the Flyers inked him to a one-year, $3 million contract in May. And after the Flyers traded away defenseman Nicklas Grossmann to Arizona in June, it was obvious Medvedev was brought in to bolster the blue line in preparation for Hakstol's new system.
If we can allow one preseason game and a few days of camp to be any indicator, Medvedev is going to give the Flyers exactly what they were looking for in upgrading their blue line.
Paired with Michael Del Zotto throughout camp and through Monday's game, Medvedev has looked comfortable so far playing on the smaller, North American rink compared to what he was used to in Europe.
Hakstol's system, many say, is predicated on defensemen being able to move the puck forward and join the rush. He did plenty of that Monday and recorded two shots on goal. He registered an assist on Vincent Lecavalier's power-play goal in the second period.
"I thought it was a pretty good first night," Hakstol said. "The game's different on the smaller sheet, but he moved the puck pretty well. Dealing with time and space defensively, he's going to continue to make that adjustment. Overall, he accounted for himself pretty well, I thought, on night one."
"Third line" shows promise
All three players that currently make up what appears to be the Flyers' third line are entering 2015-16 with something to prove. The line of Sam Gagner, Vincent Lecavalier and R.J. Umberger was formed on Day 1 of camp Friday and got their first chance to play a game together on Monday night.
Besides the fact Lecavalier scored on the power-play, the line was able to make plays for most of the night. Umberger tied Lecavalier and Del Zotto for a team-high with four shots apiece. Gagner added two of his own. All three looked comfortable, with Lecavalier back at his natural center and Gagner playing the left side, a position he played the least of last year in Arizona.
Umberger, who has said during camp that he feels like a whole new person after surgery, showed some speed and quickness.
If this trio can give the Flyers some secondary offense to their top two lines, it will go a long way, obviously. The only thing that needs answering is where Brayden Schenn (who scored a goal in Brooklyn's game Monday) fits in?
Hakstol said before the game that nothing is set in stone yet and he's been looking for consistency early on in camp. Lines may change as the the next few days develop, perhaps as early as Tuesday's preseason matchup against the Rangers.