Holmgren's job safe, Luukko says

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According to Comcast president Peter Luukko, Flyers' GM Paul Holmgren will be back next season. (David Maialetti/Staff file photo)

An underachieving season has not put Paul Holmgren's job in jeopardy.

Holmgren will remain the Flyers' general manager even if they continue to stumble and do not make the playoffs, Peter Luukko said yesterday.

Luukko is president of Comcast-Spectacor, the Flyers' parent company.

"He is safe," Luukko said. "Paul's doing a great job."

There has been speculation that if the Flyers, who have lost six of their last seven games and are seventh in the Eastern Conference, do not win a playoff berth, Holmgren will be dismissed.

That won't happen, said Luukko, whose team has been stalled by injuries to goalies Ray Emery and Michael Leighton and to its leading scorer, Jeff Carter.

"When we're playing consistently, we're very good and have as good a shot as anybody," Luukko said, referring to the Flyers' playoff chances.

Luukko said it was "dangerous" to overreact when things weren't going well.

Holmgren, who was limited at the trade deadline because the team didn't have much salary-cap space, has a contract that runs until the end of the 2011-12 season. He is in his fourth year as the team's general manager and his 31st season with the organization.

In 2007-08, Holmgren's first full season as the general manager, the Flyers had a 39-point improvement from the previous year, the best in the NHL, and reached the conference finals.

Last year, they were eliminated in the first round, and are struggling this season despite the addition of star defenseman Chris Pronger. - Sam Carchidi