August 15, 2016 |
Because of salary-cap restraints, Flyers general manager Ron Hextall didn't make a big splash in the offseason. That could change Monday, though Hextall faces difficult odds as he tries to sign gifted Harvard left winger Jimmy Vesey. Vesey, the Hobey Baker winner as collegiate hockey's top player last season, becomes an unrestricted free agent Monday, and he has many teams courting him. If the Flyers are able to sign him, he could land a spot in their top six this season.
August 8, 2016 |
Lately, anyone who follows Philadelphia sports - the four major pro franchises, that is - has to feel like the last person in line at the DMV. You've taken your number. You're waiting your turn. And you're just hoping that the process, however long it takes, turns out to be less aggravating than the last time you went through it. That's all we're doing now, it seems. We're waiting for the Eagles, the Phillies, the Sixers, and the Flyers to become more competitive, more interesting.
July 29, 2016 |
THE SUMMER of 1990 was a turbulent one in sports. George Steinbrenner was suspended by baseball commissioner Fay Vincent for his involvement with a small-time gambler named Howie Spira. Pete Rose was headed to prison. Bob Clarke had just been fired as the Flyers' general manager. Ron Hextall was holding out for $1 million. (One million! For a goalie!! The nerve!!) And . . . Don King was battling it out with Buster Douglas and his manager in a New York courtroom over the boxer's future, with casino owners Steve Wynn and Donald Trump either directly or indirectly involved and millions of dollars at stake.
July 13, 2016 |
The Flyers signed 24-year-old forward Roman Lyubimov to a one-year, two-way entry-level contract on Monday. The 6-foot-2, 207-pound Lyubimov spent the last six seasons in the Kontinental Hockey League with CSKA Moscow. "He's a big guy. He skates well, plays a solid two-way game," Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said. "We feel like he adds depth to the organization. We'll see how he does in training camp. " Hextall said the team was aware of Lyubimov for the last couple of years, "but he really popped at the World Championships this past year" when he represented Russia and had four goals and four assists in 10 games.
July 12, 2016 |
If overcoming adversity leads to success, center Cole Bardreau should have a solid NHL career. Signed by the Flyers as a free agent last year, the 5-foot-10, 193-pound Bardreau - who fractured his neck while playing for Cornell in 2013 and was nearly paralyzed - looks like he has a future as a scrappy third- or fourth-line player. "He's tenacious, irritating, hard-working," general manager Ron Hextall said after watching Bardreau at the Flyers' development camp in Voorhees the other day. "Plays hard and plays physical.
July 9, 2016 |
Speedy right winger Nicolas Aube-Kubel, selected by the Flyers in the second round of the 2014 draft, said he benefited from an AHL stint with Lehigh Valley late last season. "The six games I played with the Phantoms helped a lot," Aube-Kubel said after the first day of the Flyers' development camp Friday at the Skate Zone in Voorhees. "I think I know what to expect for next year, and it also helps me to know what to do this summer. " Playing for Val d'Or in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Aube-Kubel had 38 goals and 84 points in 61 games last season.
July 9, 2016 |
For the Flyers, the focus of development camp - which started in Voorhees on Thursday - is on fundamentals, nutrition, and conditioning habits that will help the prospects in their pursuit of the NHL. The evaluation will come at a later date. For some, like touted defenseman Ivan Provorov and right winger Travis Konecny, the scrutiny will begin during training camp in September. Both are 19 and have a legitimate shot to earn a roster spot with the Flyers this season. Both have dominated juniors and, because of their ages, would not be permitted to spend this season in the AHL with the Phantoms.
July 4, 2016 |
The Flyers got marginally better after signing lower-level free agents Dale Weise and Boyd Gordon on Friday, but don't plan on attending a Stanley Cup parade down Broad Street next June. This is a long process, folks, and general manager Ron Hextall is committed to building through the draft and adding expensive free agents at the right time. Like, say, next July. Or possibly the year after. So if you don't have patience, if you don't enjoy the brick-by-brick process, you probably shouldn't be following the Orange and Black.
June 29, 2016 |
Bernie Parent. In some ways, that is where every look at Flyers history should start, and where every attempt by the team to make more history often dead-ends. No aspect of putting together a roster capable of winning the Stanley Cup has been more frustrating for the franchise than finding the guy who will finally replace Bernie Parent. Forty-one years after the last Cup, it hasn't happened yet. Along the way, there have been tragedy and comedy, near success and utter failure, homegrown talent that bloomed and withered, outsiders past their prime or never to reach one, and always the belief that if they could ever find that one guy . . . Wayne Stephenson, Pete Peeters, Phil Myre, Rick St. Croix, Pelle Lindbergh, Bob Froese, Darren Jensen, Ron Hextall.
June 27, 2016 |
BUFFALO - Pascal Laberge and his family have been through a tragic year, but the talented right winger had a moment to savor Saturday morning as he hugged his father after learning the Flyers had selected him in the second round of the NHL draft. "My family and I have been through a lot," Laberge said. Last September, his stepmother - a woman Laberge said he "loved dearly" - died of cancer. It wasn't many days later that his father called Laberge and his brothers into their living room and broke down in tears, telling them he had prostate cancer.