Paul Holmgren may be ready to step aside as general manager of the Flyers, according to a report from CSNPhilly’s Tim Panacio.
“Holmgren is entering the final year of his contract, but a number of NHL sources believe he will step aside and return to amateur scouting,” Panacio wrote. “As one source noted, scouting is what Holmgren has always liked best. He misses the relationship with that side of hockey.”
Last July, the Flyers hired Ron Hextall as assistant general manager. The former goalie held the same position with the Los Angeles Kings, a team built for lasting success that had just won the Stanley Cup.
“He’s probably the most highly thought-of guy who is not a general manager," Holmgren said last summer. "To add him to our staff is huge.”
Hextall made it clear at the time that he wanted to be a general manager somewhere in the NHL one day.
"If that were to work out at some point when [Holmgren has] had enough, that’s great," Hextall said. "It could happen at 29 other places, too."
Holmgren had nothing but praise for Hextall and his abilities.
"Ron is certainly qualified to be a general manager," Holmgren said in July. "His knowledge of building teams from the ground up, which is basically what he did in L.A. - they weren't in good shape when he got there - is [valuable]. It could happen very soon with a number of teams. You never know. This is a funny business sometimes."
The assumption has been Hextall returned to Philadelphia to take as over as general manager once Holmgren’s time was up. If Panacio’s report is true, that may be happening sooner rather than later.
However, Frank Seravalli wrote in Friday's Daily News that Hextall "could be the target of quite a few openings in the NHL this summer, including Washington or even Vancouver."