After listening to Flyers GM Paul Holmgren Thursday, I get the sense that _ unless other teams bring down their demands _ he will not be a player in the trading sweepstakes for Anaheim’s Bobby Ryan or Columbus’ Rick Nash.
In other words, the Flyers are not dealing promising centers Sean Couturier or Brayden Schenn.
Holmgren talked today after the Flyers signed winger Ruslan Fedotenko and defenseman Bruno Gervais, a pair of unrestricted free agents.
The Flyers still have the cap space to make a deal, but my sense is that they are committed to the kids _ they played 12 rookies last season _ and will give them another year to develop.
They can use that cap space to make a move during this season _ or have plenty of room next year, when the free-agent class is expected to include Shea Weber, Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf, among other marquee names. (Kimmo Timonen and Scott Hartnell will also be among the UFAs in 2013.)
“I really like our team,” Holmgren said, “and I’m hesitant to look at anything where I’ve got to give up something (important) to get something back. We have a lot of good young players that have tremendous potential. Quite frankly, I’m happy with our team right now. That doesn’t mean we won’t look and see what happens.”
Holmgen said the Flyers “took a couple swings for the fences early on in free agency” _ he was referring to Zach Parise and Ryan Suter _ “and those are adding players that you’re not taking away from your team. We had to slide to Plan B, and we’re happy with the players we got in Plan B.”
And happy to watch the youngsters mature and develop into (hopefully) stars.
Breakaways. Holmgren on not being able to resign Matt Carle, who went to Tampa Bay: “I’m disappointed, but we’ll move on. We tried hard to sign Matt.”….Holmgren said he spoke with Jaromir Jagr’s agent, Petr Svoboda, throughout the start of free agency. “I don’t know if he got antsy or what. I got a call late on the 3rd (of July) that he was getting excited and wanted to make a move, and I wasn’t prepared to do anything at that time," the GM said. "We still had offers out on the table that I wanted to wait on, and I wasn’t prepared to move on Jaromir at the time….and he wasn’t ready to wait.” Jagr signed with Dallas…..Holmgren said he doesn’t expect problems coming to an agreement with Jake Voracek, a restricted free agent. “I don’t want to put a timeline on it, but he’ll be signed at some point," he said.