It’s finally here! The week of NHL free agency, the most entertaining time of the season, is upon us! As Chuck Fletcher and the rest of the suits enter the war room with a blank check and calculator in tow, fans patiently wait to see what moves, if any, the organization makes. After a relatively quite entry draft, they are clearly waiting for the week of free agency to make their moves… right? So what are the hottest takes the Philadelphia Flyers could possibly pull out of their hats this week?
Number 5: Finally Acquire a 3C
This shouldn’t really be a hot take, but considering the Flyers have ignored their depth down the middle for years now, if they actually add a center with some kind of legitimacy, it will be big news. The last few seasons they’ve tasked Morgan Frost, Nate Thompson, Derick Brassard, Patrick Brown, Derek Grant and Misha Vorobyev with the 3C role. Who’d a thunk that motley crew wouldn’t have any success? It’s far beyond time to bring in a real option to tandem in the middle-six with Kevin Hayes, especially considering both he and Couturier are coming off major injuries.
Number 4: JVR Goes Away
Again, something that theoretically shouldn’t be a hot take, as clearing the last year of JVR’s $7 million contract should be priority number one this summer. Whether or not they can ditch his cap will go a long way to determining the rest of the offseason. Buying him out frees up less than $3 million, retaining half his contract is only $3.5 million, neither of which go far in adding anybody of note during the summer. Some are worried about packaging a draft pick or two in order to pull off a trade, but it it clears the entire $7 million off the books, losing a draft pick is the least they can do if it means a real addition this summer.
Number 3: Johnny Gaudreau Signs
The connection between the Flyers and South Jersey native Johnny Gaudreau has been there since he entered the league a decade ago. Now, with his contract in Calgary up and he’s about to hit free agency, the prophecy can finally be fulfilled. How they squeeze him under the cap, or what moves they do to supplement his addition? Don’t ask too many questions the organization clearly didn’t think far enough ahead to have answers to.
Number 2: Provorov Gets Traded
The rumors have been out there since a messy end-of-season press conference that 25-year-old defenseman Ivan Provorov could seek a change of scenery this summer. It’s one of those deals that is hard to imagine the Flyers walking away the victor of, but that won’t stop them from making a trade anyway. It’d be a completely baffling move considering they’re without Ryan Ellis, and the new guy DeAngelo isn’t exactly great in his own end, but don’t put it past Chuck Fletcher to make trades that don’t make any sense.
Number 1: They Run It Back
Considering (as of this writing) the Flyers haven’t cleared a single dollar of cap space, there seems to be a real possibility that nothing really changes. They acquired Tony DeAngelo from the Hurricanes, but beyond that, what if they just run it back with primarily the same exact roster for yet another year? It’s a frightening but potentially very real outcome as of right now.
The Franchise Folds
Ok, sure it’s not gonna happen, but like, at this point would anybody care if it did?
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)
photo credit: nhl.com