Tell me if you've heard this before: Team hires new general manager to rebuild from the very bottom up. New GM comes in, jettisons some high-salaried players for additional high draft picks, addresses the team's long-standing need for a certain position by drafting a slew of prospects who man said position, and waits patiently for one to emerge.
He hires a coach with no head coaching experience at that level. He is reticent to speak with the media about any of it, accused at times of a For-Me-To-Know-You-To-Find-Out approach. He gives no real time line for when his machinations will result in a championship-caliber team, and continues to stockpile picks, even when it means trading away young players he had acquired in earlier moves.
He is relieved of his duties in mid-plan, before he can see the fruits of his labor. He is replaced by an experienced general manager with his own past of mixed results, the son of a more famous and arguably more successful executive.
Fired from his previous job, he is acting as a consultant when he is hired to become the team's new GM.
If the Flyers name Chuck Fletcher as their next general manager, as several reports now indicate, it will be the latest step to eerily mimic what occurred with the other team that shares the Wells Fargo Center.
Sam Hinkie kept drafting big men until he hit on Joel Embiid. He traded away a star or two for even more picks, accumulated so many high draft picks over his three seasons that his replacement, Bryan Colangelo, spent them like a teenager spends found money.
Colangelo had drafted well and drafted terribly in stints with Phoenix and Toronto, but he was Jerry's kid, and Jerry Colangelo was NBA royalty. Fletcher's father, Cliff Fletcher, is a Hall of Fame NHL executive whose boldness in making trades earned him not one but two nicknames: The Silver Fox and Trader Cliff.
"I'd rather trust my instincts and get burned on a deal than miss out on an opportunity to improve the team," he once famously said.
Like his father, Chuck has done both, although his dismissal by the Minnesota Wild last April after nine seasons was accompanied by some of the rhetoric used by Flyers team president Paul Holmgren and Comcast Spectacor chairman Dave Scott this week. In replacing Fletcher with Paul Fenton, Wild owner Craig Leopold said then he wanted "a new set of eyes'' who "doesn't feel ownership to certain players.''
Implied if not stated in Hextall's dismissal was an unwillingness to part with any of the prospects he had, in Scott's words, "stockpiled'' during his four-plus seasons as Flyers GM.
Despite Leopold's criticism, Chuck Fletcher has shown a willingness to make big deals, and he has both won and been burned. Perhaps the most interesting of these, given the current state of the Flyers, is the deal he swung in January 2015 to acquire Devan Dubnyk from the Coyotes for a third-round pick.
Like the Flyers, Minnesota's goaltending was a mess. Four goalies had logged significant minutes the season before, and the underwhelming play of both Niklas Backstrom and Darcy Kuemper was a contributing factor to their last-place status.
Dubnyk shut out the Sabres in his first start, and triggered the Wild's surge into the playoffs with a .936 save percentage and 1.78 goals-against average. He has averaged more than 60 games played in each of the three seasons since, finishing each season with a save percentage of at least .916.
Should Fletcher pull of anything remotely like that here, especially in the immediate future, it will reinforce Holmgren and ownership's contention that Hextall's "unyielding'' approach was unnecessarily stagnating the "process'' he had been hired to undertake.
If he doesn't, if this year's edition does not rebound or plays even worse?