Flyers’ Samuel Morin ‘really, really wanted to be a hockey player,’ but has no regrets

Samuel Morin, the big Philadelphia Flyers defenseman who was forced to retire with serious right knee injuries, held a conference call with reporters on Thursday and reiterated what he told Philly Hockey Now he two days ago.

That he left everything on ice and he has no regrets.

That he was at peace with stepping down as a player, mostly because he had known about it for a few months and had time to accept it.

This hockey is his life and he plans to stay in the game in some capacity with the Flyers and “climb up the ranks.”

Gave “absolutely everything”

“You look in the mirror every night before you go to bed,” the 6-foot-6, 230-pound player said on a Zoom call from Quebec City, “and I gave absolutely my all. I played injured for so long. I was really taken. My knee was really bad. Even last year I played injured. My meniscus was really messed up, almost a tear. I really, really wanted to be a hockey player, but this year when I got hurt again in training camp, I knew it was pretty bad.

Morin, a carefree guy who only played 29 NHL games, said he was told he would be fine, but the reality set in around Christmas that his career was about to end. .

“You look in the mirror, and I gave it my all, so I’m not ashamed of myself at all,” he said. “I have no regrets.”

Selected in the first round (11th overall) in 2013, Morin had discussions with general manager Chuck Fletcher about his work with the Philadelphia Flyers organization.

“It’s something I’m going to have to analyze this summer,” Morin said of the job he hoped to get. “I have to take my time. I had a very good chat with Chuck before leaving; he is a very good person and he understands my situation. He respects what I have done in my career. Coming back from all those injuries, being a first rounder and all those expectations. I’m sure I can help a young underage player with all of this. I need to see all my options.

Undecided on new role

He said staying with the Philadelphia Flyers “would be great for me, but I really don’t know right now what’s best for me.

Morin, 26, said he had been away from his parents, younger sister and friends for a long time because of COVID, and being back home was good for him.

“I really missed my family during those years. I was a bit lonely because I needed to be in Philadelphia to train because Quebec was so closed,” Morin said, adding that he was proud of himself for enduring the physical and mental pain of three knee surgeries, a broken jaw and many other physical issues.” Right now my mental state is good to be with my family. I have good support here in Quebec.

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Morin said he will miss his teammates, he will miss traveling with them and joking with them in the locker room and at practices.

“I was so lucky to be here with the Flyers,” he said. “They’re really, really good guys, and I’m so grateful to them.”

He was asked how hard it would be not to have hockey as an identity.

“Honestly, hockey is my life and will be my life,” he said in a good-natured tone. “I want to stay in hockey. I told my parents about it too. I love it. I love it. I was injured for a long time and watched a lot of hockey. I think in life sometimes things happen and you keep moving forward.

Morin added: “I am young. I’m going to be 27 soon, and I have so much going on for me and I can’t wait to be there, for my future job. That’s what I want to do. I want to stay involved in hockey. I know that for sure. I love it. I think I can climb the ladder.

He said he will have the same attitude working behind the scenes as when he was a little kid whose goal was to reach the NHL.

“I want to graduate the ranks and one day be higher in those ranks,” he said. “Hockey will always be part of me, that’s for sure. … I have to give it my all. Give all my heart and I have to have the same attitude he had as a player.

Kapanen hired

Former Flyer Sami Kapanen, 48, has been named the organization’s European Development and Professional Scout, and Kyle Shero has been selected as an amateur scout, Fletcher announced.

The Flyers need to improve their selection of European players.

Shero, 23, the grandson of the late Fred Shero, the Flyers’ iconic Stanley Cup champion coach in 1974 and 1975, will be primarily responsible for scouting high school, junior and NCAA players in the region of New England.

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Catherine J. Martinez