Sunday, August 30, 2015

Flyers' goalie dilemma a win-win

Flyers' goalie dilemma a win-win

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     The unsettled goalie situation is actually a win-win for the Flyers.
     It will provide both goalies _ Antero Niittymaki and Marty Biron _ with extra focus as they try to be the go-to guy in the Flyers’ last 30 regular-season games.
    Both are not only trying to steer the Flyers to the Atlantic Division title and a high Eastern Conference seeding, but they are playing for a contract.
    Talk about incentive.
    Niittymaki has been the much more consistent and deserves to be No. 1 right now. But don’t discount Biron. The feeling here is that elevating Niittymaki to No. 1 will light a fire under Biron. Don’t be surprised if Biron goes on a hot streak and ends up being the Flyers’ main goalie down the stretch and into the playoffs.
    If not, Niittymaki is more than capable and is playing with a high confidence level.
    Either way, the goalie competition _ at least with 30 games left _ is a good thing for the Flyers.
   That said, they need a clear-cut No. 1 heading into the playoffs.
   They also need some cap space to land a bruising defenseman before the March 4 trade deadline. That makes Biron ($3.5 million) the goalie they would prefer to trade. There are a few playoff contenders that could use a goalie.   

    Why would they deal for the slumping Biron?
    Take a look at the video form last year’s first two playoff rounds.

_ Sam Carchidi

Inquirer Staff Writer
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