Saturday, February 6, 2016

Give Holmgren credit for trying to improve Flyers

(UPDATED: Langenbrunner dealt to Dallas.)

Give Holmgren credit for trying to improve Flyers

Jamie Langenbrunner was traded to the Stars today.(Michael Perez/AP file photo)
Jamie Langenbrunner was traded to the Stars today.(Michael Perez/AP file photo)

     (UPDATED: Langenbrunner dealt to Dallas.)

    NEWARK, N.J. _ Even though the Flyers didn't get Jamie Langenbrunner, give general manager Paul Holmgren credit for trying to acquire the New Jersey Devils’ veteran winger.
    Holmgren, whose team is among the NHL’s elite, could have been satisfied to sit pat with his talented group.
    Instead, he tried to add a proven leader, someone who has served as the Devils’ long-time captain _ and someone who has won Stanley Cups with Dallas in 1999 and New Jersey in 2003.
     According to an NHL source, the Flyers offered two draft picks for Langenbrunner, 35, who was willing to waive his no-trade clause gto land with the right team.
    The draft picks were believed to be third- and fifth-round selections.
    It wasn't enough.

    The Devils sent Langenbrunner to Dallas for a conditional third-round pick, which could turn into a second-round selection.

    Where would Langenbrunner have fit in the Flyers’ deep lineup?
    Probably as a third-line winger, playing on a unit with Jeff Carter and Claude Giroux, That would have bumped winger Darroll Powe onto the fourth line, with center Blair Betts. The other fourth-line winger would have probably alternated among  Dan Carcillo, Nik Zherdev and Jody Shelley.
    The Flyers, thanks to sending Michael Leighton to the Phantoms, have about $3.6 million of acquisition space available, and Langenbrunner is in the final year of a $2.8 million deal.
    By adding Langenbrunner the Flyers would have risked altering their great team chemistry. But any time you have a chance to add a character, playoff-tested  player who still has skills (four goals, 10 assists for an awful Devils team), you have to go for it.
    So give Holmgren credit for trying.

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    What’s your take?
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