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2017 DRAFT: 5 Things to know for this weekend

From the second to the 199th overall pick and everything in between

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

The NHL Draft is F-I-N-A-L-L-Y here and tonight the Flyers will add to their deep pool of prospects. Before we dive into what you need to know, here's where you can watch:

The First Round from the United Center in Chicago begins at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN. Rounds 2 through 7 will be broadcast live on the NHL Network beginning Saturday morning at 10 a.m. ET.

1. A SPECIAL YEAR

With the second overall pick, the Flyers will be "on the clock" immediately after the New Jersey Devils select first and have a total of five minutes to make their selection.

How rare is this? 

Well, the Flyers haven't drafted this high in 10 years and this is only the THIRD time in franchise history that the club has drafted in the Top 2. And you can put away the public perception that this is a bad draft year.

"People talk about this draft and say it's not a very good draft - they're wrong," said Flyers GM Ron Hextall. "It's a good draft. It's not maybe what the last two were, but the last two were bumpers, so this is a good draft."

Another little tidbit, whoever the Flyers pick, he will be 469th draft pick in team history.

2. FOLLOW US & THEM

Looking for the quickest and easiest way to follow the action? Stay tuned to each of the Flyers social network accounts for the latest news and unique content before, during and after the draft. 

Instant news, quotes and photos from Flyers draft floor, and of course the draft picks themselves are on tap this weekend. Fans will even get a chance to submit a questions and hear directly from whomever the Flyers pick at No. 2 on Friday night.

Twitter: @NHLFlyers

Instagram: philadelphiaflyers

Facebook: Philadelphia Flyers

Snapchat: nhlflyers

3. FORWARD THINKING?

The draft is about taking the best player available, and certainly that is the Flyers philosophy when selecting, but what exactly does that mean? 

The best player now might not be the best player later on and going through a list of 200-250 players is all about future potential and what the prospect can develop into.

"You're looking for individual traits, first of all," said Flyers GM Ron Hextall when talking about the task at hand for the scouts on a year-long basis. "You're looking at skating, size, skill and hockey sense - then you have to make a projection."

That being said, the Flyers GM said in his pre-draft press conference his ideal draft would see a 7-3-1 result with seven forwards, three defensemen and one goaltender. As luck would have it, this is considered by many scouts around the NHL as a very top-heavy draft of forwards.

4. EXPECT A TRADE

Of course it's not a 100 percent certainly, but it's a pretty good bet that the Flyers will make a trade of some sort during the two-day draft… The odds get even better if you throw in either the day before or day after a draft.

In 14 of the last 17 drafts, beginning with the 2000 NHL Entry Draft, the Flyers have made at least one trade on the day of the draft… They have also made a trade on the day-before, day-of or day-after draft weekend in 16 of the last 17 draft years.

Holding 11 picks in this year's draft and just eight next season, including only four in rounds 1-4, could see the Flyers looking ahead to 2018. 

5. DON'T BLINK… ESPECIALLY SATURDAY

With the anticipation of the Flyers picking at #2 overall, the club will take center stage early on in the show. The night doesn't end there though. As mentioned above, fans can follow the pick on social networks as he goes through the series of interviews and photos, but Flyers management will quickly move on with most of their work ahead of them.

In rounds 2-7 teams will have exactly three minutes to make their selection between picks and there isn't the formal procedure of the player going up on stage and posing for a number of pictures like Round 1. That will make for a very tight window for the Flyers to select at 75th & 80, not to mention 106, 107 & 108 of their fourth round.

"There's a lot of guys that go through the draft that are close. There will be good debate at [44th overall] because who knows how many players will be there - 4, 6, 8, 10 that we could chose," added Hextall. "There's a lot of different ways you could go. You have to be prepared at the table. You can't be sitting there saying 'OK, what do we do now?' You don't have much time to make decisions."

For much more and everything Flyers draft related, go to DRAFT CENTRAL HERE…

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