February 20, 2015 |
Nick Schultz started the season as the Flyers' seventh defenseman but entered the lineup after Braydon Coburn broke his foot in the opener. Not only has Schultz been a regular ever since, he has arguably been the team's top defenseman. On Wednesday, he was rewarded, signing a two-year, $4.5 million deal with a salary-cap hit of $2.25 million per season. He was signed as a free agent last summer for $1.25 million. Schultz, 32, has provided steady defense and has lately been on the top pairing with Mark Streit.
January 22, 2015 |
CHRIS PRONGER'S name is listed in the media notes before every Flyers game this season, complete with his career point total against that night's opponent and this line: "Has missed the last two seasons due to post-concussion syndrome. " Pronger, of course, works for the NHL these days, yet is still somehow technically a defenseman on this year's Flyer's team - which explains as much or as little about this disastrous season as anything else. That includes the first period of last night's fight-filled, 3-2 overtime victory over Pittsburgh, in which the visiting Penguins outshot the Flyers 17-3, received a 5-minute power play thanks to an incredibly cheap shot by Zac Rinaldo, and yet emerged down a goal.
January 6, 2015 |
IF YOU AIN'T cheatin', you ain't tryin'. That was the message emanating from the Flyers, hours after they were fined an undisclosed amount of money by the NHL yesterday for violating the Collective Bargaining Agreement's moratorium on team activities during the holiday break. Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said the team knowingly violated the rule, but risk was outweighed by the reward of a potential victory. Hextall said he was approached by Flyers players asking if they could schedule their chartered flight for Dec. 26. Normally, the team would have flown on the afternoon that day, but the 3-day holiday break barred any team activity from Dec. 24 to 26. So, instead of flying on Dec. 27, the day of the game against the Predators, the Flyers departed Philadelphia International Airport at 8:24 p.m. on Dec. 26 and hoped word would not leak out. That flight data was ultimately culled by Rogers Sportsnet in Toronto, which first broke the rule violation.
November 24, 2014 |
There is a theory floating around that the Flyers are off to a poor start because Claude Giroux is not a good captain. It's an erroneous theory. The Flyers have struggled because they have mid-level talent, and because several players haven't played with the passion provided by Giroux and his linemates. Giroux may not be the best sound bite in the Flyers' locker room, but he leads - quite well - with his relentless style on the ice. The 26-year-old star center has his own captain's style.
October 17, 2014 |
Chris Pronger is as feisty off the ice as he was during his playing days. The former defenseman bristled at the suggestion that, by taking a job with the NHL's player-safety department on Friday, it is a conflict of interest because he is being paid by the Flyers for the next three seasons. Pronger said that he is "merely a sounding board" for Stephane Quintal, the NHL's senior vice president of player safety, and that Quintal will hand out disciplinary measures. Pronger will not be permitted to make disciplinary recommendations on incidents involving the Flyers.
October 14, 2014 |
WHAT'S THE BEST WAY to bury embarrassing news in the hockey world? Send out a press release at 6:46 p.m. on a Friday, before a long, holiday weekend, that completely skirts the issues at hand. That's what the NHL attempted to do last week, with today being Thanksgiving in Canada, to complete their icky hiring of Chris Pronger in the Department of Player Safety. Conveniently, the press release failed to mention that Pronger is still on the Flyers' roster. Or that he is still owed another $5.15 million from the Flyers, payable through April 2017.
October 13, 2014 |
An NHL SiriusXM commentator noted the irony of the situation Thursday: Chris Pronger, known as Captain Nasty because of the ultraphysical way he played, was being considered for a job in the league's player-safety department. "It's like O.J. Simpson doing marriage counseling," Jim "Boomer" Gordon told his radio listeners. On Friday, it became official. Pronger, who is technically still on the Flyers roster, was hired by the NHL. "I think it's a good move for the league," Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said Saturday night.
October 12, 2014 |
The Flyers received some encouraging news Friday: Top-pairing defenseman Braydon Coburn will not miss as much time as originally feared, general manager Ron Hextall said. Hextall said the Flyers won't know Coburn's time frame until he is examined by a specialist Monday, but that he was "optimistic" that the veteran would be able to play when the team starts a three-game road trip in Dallas next Saturday. If that's the case, Coburn would have missed just three games since suffering an undisclosed lower-body injury in Boston on Wednesday.
October 11, 2014 |
Even though Chris Pronger is still on the Flyers' payroll, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said he wouldn't have a problem if the onetime defensive standout worked in the league's player-safety department. And that's apparently what happened Thursday night, when Pronger was hired, according to TSN, which also reported that he remained on the Flyers' long-term injured list, meaning the team would still get $4.9 million in salary-cap relief. The Flyers owe Pronger a total of $5.15 million for the final three years of his contract.
October 10, 2014 |
BOSTON - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, the Flyers' speedy fourth-line center, was overjoyed by his accomplishment. "I don't know if I really realize what's going on," he said before the season opener Wednesday against the Bruins. "I don't know if it's because it's so many years that you don't believe in this kind of stuff, that it's going to happen to you. " At 29, Bellemare became the ninth French-born player to reach the NHL when he played in the Flyers-Bruins matchup. "It's a big step for our country, for all our hockey fans - to have one more representative of the country," he said.