Kessel helps Flyers edge Caps in rookie game

  One day after he signed an entry-level contract, defenseman Blake Kessel scored a power-play goal and added an assist as the Flyers outlasted Washington, 3-2, in a rookie game at the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday night.

     "It’s a dream to get out there and wear an NHL jersey,” said Kessel, who played the last three seasons at the University of New Hampshire, including one season in which he was teammates with James van Riemsdyk. “It has always been a goal of mine.  When you realize something like this and you walk into the locker room and see that jersey with your name on the back, it is just very special."

   Kessel signed a two-year deal for $925,000 per season on Wednesday. He was originally drafted by the Islanders in the sixth round of 2007, but did not sign

   He figures to start the season with the AHL Phantoms, but he made a very favorable first impression Thursday before a lively crowd.



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