By Jenny Masters
Nolan Patrick is ready to play tonight for the first time in more than 21 months when the Flyers open the season at home against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Patrick, the No. 2 pick in the 2017 NHL Draft, missed all of last season because of a migraine disorder and hasn’t played since April 2, 2019. The center scored a goal and played center on a line with James van Riemsdyk and Jakub Voracek during a scrimmage Sunday.
“Made a couple mistakes out there, but my energy level felt good, thought our line created quite a few scoring chances,” Patrick said. “Lot of fun being back out there. … I feel really good and I’ll be ready for Wednesday.”
Patrick also said he was happy with the chemistry he generated with his linemates.
“I’ve played with both of them quite a bit,” he said. “Played with [Voracek] a lot. We read off each other, and they’re both very smart players. It’s easy to read off them. Thought we were making good plays tonight.”
Coach Alain Vigneault said he thought Patrick got better as the scrimmage progressed.
“I thought he did a lot of the right things on the ice,” Vigneault said. “Thought that line had some chemistry and some good moments. For him and for our team, that’s a step in the right direction.”