Paul Holmgren has some retooling to do. Retooling? I’ll retool you! Join us for your all-day, nonstop Flyers free agency running commentary.
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For just the hard news and signings, use our Flyers Free Agency Cheat Sheet.
Is this thing on? Good. Let’s get silly.
We start off with some good news– the Flyers reportedly reached a deal with Claude Giroux last night. It is for eight years, $66.2 million with a cap hit of $8.275 million.
Paul Holmgren likely lied about the deal not being done to Sam Carchidi of the Inquirer:
It is the second largest deal the Flyers have ever given… next to the one Mike Richards got. More, from Dave Isaac: http://www.courierpostonline.com/article/20130705/SPORTS04/307050007
Tim Panaccio reported yesterday that the Flyers are OUT on Tim Thomas, and that makes this Tweet from Bob McKenzie about former Flyer and drug user Ray Emery all the more telling. Emery is in Philly:
The signing period officially starts at noon. But I drove home from the shore at 1 am last night and have a Keurig machine connected to an IV just so we could get this thing rolling early. Keep it here all day. The last time I did a live blog, a Chechnyan kid wound up bleeding in the back of a boat. I can only assume some Flyer will suffer a similar fate today.
Sam Carchidi makes the case for the Flyers signing Viktor Stalberg:
The Flyers should try to add free-agent left winger Viktor Stalberg, a speedy Swede who is younger, faster, and bigger than Gagne.
It would also give them a much better lineup than last year because Lecavalier (6-foot-4, 208 pounds) and Stalberg (6-3, 209) would win a lot of board battles with their size. The Flyers struggled to control the puck this past season, and a big reason was because they missed beefy Jaromir Jagr and his ability to control the puck and create a cycle in the offensive end.
Two years ago, the last 82-game season, Stalberg had 22 goals for the Blackhawks. He had nine goals, 23 points, and a plus-16 rating in the lockout-shortened 2013 season, playing primarily on a solid third line with Bryan Bickell and Andrew Shaw for the eventual Stanley Cup champions.
Stalberg, who fell into disfavor with coach Joel Quenneville in the playoffs and found himself benched a few times, will probably cost a little over $2 million in the free-agent market.
Danny Briere called Canadiens fans the most passionate in the league on TSN 1050 in Toronto. Thanks, Daniel.
You no like?
Ryan Lambert of Puck Daddy:
The best players available in this already-bizarre summer all come with obvious issues. There are no shining beacons here, and yet people will flock to them nonetheless. You so rarely see massive, franchise-altering free agent moves even when big-time players are involved. You certainly don’t see them with players of this caliber.
It’s always a seller’s market at this time of year, but when Danny Briere — who will be 36 in October, and is coming off a few years in which he was awful at even strength despite somewhat weak competition — is getting multiple seasons at $4 million per under a $64.3 million cap, you know that reason isn’t exactly going to rule the day.
Impressive FAKE Bob McKenzie account:
Don’t we all, Happy Ninja.
Former Bruin Tyler Seguin a modern day Jeff Carter:
This trade might not be popular among all Bruins fans, who envisioned Seguin as a future superstar. But he might go down as a player who squandered his great gifts. Multiple sources said the 21-year-old Seguin crossed the line this season with reckless partying.
It apparently got so bad that during the playoffs, the Bruins ordered Seguin to live in a hotel, where a guard was hired to make sure he stayed in his room.
The Flyers have officially confirmed the Claude Giroux signing.
Daniel Alfredsson will be leaving the Senators.
It’s still looking like the Flyers and Simon Gagne will reach an agreement https://twitter.com/DNFlyers/status/353167638794477570
Reminder: This running commentary is (not really) brought to you by my golf whipping boy, and Flyers season ticket rep Fran, who will handle all of your OB ticket needs. Just drop him a line on Twitter and he’ll take care of you: https://twitter.com/fwalmsley
In 24 minutes, shit hits fan.
Wonder if Randy Miller has his free agency shoes on today?
Darren Dreger tweets that the Flyers will likely sign Ray Emery to a one-year deal, so he can establish himself as a starter… and then go win another Cup elsewhere https://twitter.com/DarrenDreger/status/353177760593756160
No but really, in 12 months the Flyers are going to go from $51 million failure and future homegrown Vezina winner to said Vezina winner’s backup and former Flyer and suspected drug user Ray Emery, who was a backup for Cup winner. Only Paul Holmgren could do that. The Flyers are – amazingly – going to sign Emery again to give him an audition so he can go have success elsewhere.
TSN 1050 in Toronto are laughing at Flyers’ ridiculousness but like Emery move. I do too… but I can’t get past the fact that they’re spinning in circles, acquiring Bob’s backup and Ray Emery. If only… they held onto guys.
Also, very disappointed that the Tim Thomas experiment won’t happen. That would have been oh-so-much fun. He and Papelbon could have hated Obama and loved guns and Murica together.
That said, having Steve Mason and Ray Emery will give the Flyers two absolute nutcases in net. Like, there’s danger potential… and I like it.
The Flyers reportedly passed on Brian Boucher, Tommy Soderstrom and the corpse of Pelle Lindbergh in their goaltender search
HIGH NOON IN THE EAST. LEGGO!
Buddy texts me: “I’d rather have other coke heads Carter and Richards [than Emery]. We have two backup goalies… last time we did that Dominic Roussel and Tommy Soderstrom.”
BUT, BUT LEIGHTON WAS SO GOOD FOR TWO GAMES.
Nabokov to the Islanders. So… it’s for sure Emery in Philly. Just waiting to be official. https://twitter.com/aaronward_nhl/status/353183379723788290
Peter Laviolette loves Emery, but tells Tim Panaccio he’s “not back yet.” https://twitter.com/tpanotchCSN/status/353183866544070658
Claude Giroux said all the right things about signing an extension with the Flyers http://www.courierpostonline.com/article/20130705/SPORTS04/307050032
Tim Panaccio, who blocked me on Twitter, confirmed the Emery signing. It’s a one-year deal.
Daniel Alfredsson has agreed to a one-year deal with the Red Wings. He’ll make $5.5 million, according to reports.
There it is:
Done deal: Flyers agree to one year, $1.75 M deal with Ray Emery
— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) July 5, 2013
Yeah, Sam, because the two-headed, mediocre monster system has served them so well before. Don’t dislike the signing, but not speaking in strange platitudes like weird Flyers beat writers, either.
Looks like we know where Frank Seravalli was getting his info:
Emery was 17-1 with a GAA of 1.94 and a .922 save percentage last year. Didn’t realize he was – that – good. Might see similar platoon situation in Philly.
The Flyers wrote their Ray Emery release at 11:46 a.m… http://flyers.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=676641
Signing Emery for $1.65 is a steal. It really is. Flyers have two somewhat risky yet potentially very good goalies for just over $3 million. Again, both risky.
Anyone else think it’s symbolic that the Flyers signed Emery for $1.65 million, just .1 million more than they’ll be paying Bryz this year (and the next 13)– $1.64 million?
Claude Giroux conference call transcript, from the Flyers:
Q: On his reaction to the contract
“I’m very excited. I’ve been able to play with the organization for five years… it’s been unbelievable, the fans are always expecting great things. So just to be a part of that, it’s a really great feeling.”
Q: How important was it to get this out of the way before the season started?
“That’s one thing me and [Paul Holmgren] wanted to do, to make sure we get this out of the way and from now on we can start focusing on the right thing. It’s done with.”
Q: Can you talk about playing with Vinny Lecavalier?
“I don’t know him personally, but I’ve heard a lot of good things about him. Growing up I watched him play a lot. I think he’s going to be a player the Flyers fans are going to enjoy watching. He’s an intense guy, he goes to the corners and he plays pretty rough. And obviously he puts the puck in the net. It’s great to have him. I was talking to some of the guys and everybody’s pretty pumped to have him.”
Q: Did you ever have a time where you thought you’d be a career player with the Flyers?
“I never really got to thinking about that stuff. I just go out there and play hockey. I just love playing the game, and I just try to play my best to help the team win. Five years ago I was just trying to get a spot in the NHL and make sure I get as much ice time as I can to be able to prove what I can do. A lot of that credit goes to the coaching staff and the management to have that trust in me.”
Q: When was the deal actually done?
Pretty much when it came out. We were looking at pretty much the same things, just the little details. It’s not really my job to do that, my agent did a pretty good job on that. My main focus is to play hockey, and that was pretty much my agent’s job. It’s not something I was worried about. Homer treats the players very good. I’m just lucky to be a part of this organization right now.”
Q: When were you notified?
“When [my agent] told me the deal was done? I think it was yesterday morning-ish, or around that time.”
Q: On what he’s doing now
“Yeah, that’s basically it. Pat [Brisson is] a great agent and he knows what he’s doing. That’s why I chose him so I can put all my trust in him and just worry about what I have to do. I’ve been training with Tony Greco for the last seven or eight years now I just keep doing the same training I’ve been doing every summer, so I can come to camp feeling good. I can’t be worrying about that kind of stuff.
Q: On potentially signing Ray Emery
If those rumors are true, obviously I had the chance to play with Emery before and he’s an unreal guy – a good teammate and a great goalie. It’s too bad that when he came to Philly he got hurt, but if that’s the case, that’ll be fun.
Q: Was it tough to watch the playoffs?
“Yeah, it’s always tough to watch the games after you’re done. You kind of want to be there, especially when you’ve had a taste before of the Finals. It’s really tough to watch it.”
Q: On the size of the contract
“It’s a great honor to be able to have that kind of contract. It just shows the trust they have in me, and I’m going to do my best to not let them down. A little bit of pressure like that never hurts. I have a lot of good teammates that are playing well, so I’m just pretty excited to move on from this.
Q: On seeing his former teammates go far in the playoffs
Thanks for reminding me about that, by the way. It’s tough to see them go far like that, but at the same time anytime you play with a guy and you get along with him, you’re happy for him that he gets there. Because it’s not easy to go to the Finals. Like I said, it’s just a motivation to want more, and to just want to win the Cup. It’s the only thing that we really thing about. It’s a tough Cup to win, but you’ve just got to learn from your mistakes. Last year was a tough season as a team, but we’re going to learn from it. We’re a young team and we’ve got new players on the team. I think everybody is pretty excited about the team, and they should be.
All the right things.
I’m not sure this is because they are fiscally responsible… or because they signed two backups with risky, crazy, nutcase upside. But, even if they’re average, it’s significantly better than Bryz.
The Penguins have signed Rob Scuderi to a four-year, $13.5 million deal: http://penguins.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=676693&cmpid=pit-twt-penguins
Feel like I’m watching Inception.
He got four years, $13.5 million from Shittsburgh. Mark Streit got four years, $21 million from Flyers, as noted by Sam Carchidi.
HEY, THE FLYERS SIGNED ANOTHER BACKUP GOALIE. Yann Danis, who played four games with Edmonton the last two seasons. He’ll have a two-way contract with the Phantoms. https://twitter.com/NHLFlyers/status/353200014484447232
Pierre McGuire just crushed the Flyers on the Shield Network, saying that five years is wayyy too many for Vincent Lecavalier. He said other teams were interested in him at three years, but got scared off when four- and five-year deals came up. Went as far as to say that this will hurt the Flyers.
I don’t dislike Pierre as much as most of you. He knows his stuff. Yes, he does look like a penis with hips. But, he knows his stuff. Creepily so.
Amanda Bynes checks in again about Drake’s eyes:
Now seems like a good time to remind you that our running commentary is (not really) brought to you by Summer’s Eve. When something’s gone wrong and it’s the smell of your thong, Summer’s Eve. Douche.
And by my to-be best man, Fran, who is – your man – for Flyers season tickets. Tweet him, and he’ll take care of you… just like I did for him when he was my linemate at Malvern for four years: https://twitter.com/fwalmsley
Seafaring scriptual Rob Parent trolls the Flyers. Nice.
Tim Panaccio, who blocked me on Twitter (that’s his new name), continues to say the Flyers and Gagne are close. https://twitter.com/tpanotchCSN/status/353206780932796418
Not sure if I’m buying this narrative that the Flyers are paying so much less for goalies this year. 1) They’re still paying Bryz and 2) they’re both backups. Have potential, but NEITHER WERE STARTERS LAST YEAR, one sat on bench when team won Cup, other lost job to Bobrovsky. Just saying. Perspective here, folks.
Some wanted the Flyers to sign Viktor Stalberg… he signed with Predators: https://twitter.com/DFriedmanWFAN/status/353206406175916033
SHOW ME JAGR!
Just kidding. Could happen, I’d think, though.
CapGeek.com is broken
Stalberg to Preds. Four-years, $12 million. https://twitter.com/TSNBobMcKenzie/status/353208919776178177
No, Sam, he’s not.
On this free agency day, Flyers fan and not puck bunny “Squiggg,” who at least one former Flyer turned Stanley Cup Champion may be familiar with (http://www.crossingbroad.com/2011/05/your-friday-night-car-bomb-dan-carcillos-twitter-is-a-gift-to-humanity.html), wants you to know that she’s not a puck bunny:
It’s OK, Squiggg, you’re still our second favorite not puck bunny (http://www.crossingbroad.com/2013/07/these-soon-to-be-nhl-draft-picks-were-eager-to-get-drunk-and-screw-before-their-big-day.html).
You don’t get that last update anywhere else, folks.
Really, seafaring scriptual Rob Parent is an idiot… or this is a really bad joke:
Here’s what happens when you go to the Flyers’ website:
I need food. Assuming someone reading this works for a pizza place in Horsham, yes?
Here’s the Ray Emery conference call transcript, from the Flyers:
Q: On re-signing with the Flyers
I’m excited. It’s been kind of a crazy couple days. I was really excited when I got wind that that would be an option. I’m happy to be back in a situation where the first time around I was really pumped about it and it didn’t work out the way I wanted, the way I [would have] liked. The team as a group had a great year, losing in the Finals, but I’m really excited about being back.
Q: When you left Philadelphia, at that time did you think you would ever play again?
Yeah. I understood that there was a possibility that I might not play again, but it was just kind of what’s the next step after I found out I had that condition. The next step was finding the best doctor, the best procedure… the next step after that was taking care of it, and just getting off crutches and getting out of a hospital bed, just one step at a time. You normally get what you want when you look at it that way.
Q: Do you feel like you’re a better goalie since the surgery?
Yeah. I think goaltending’s a position that you’re always… I’m a student of the game, so you’re always finding, especially as a goalie, better techniques and getting to understand the game more. Physically I was in great shape when I came there. I still feel like I’m in great shape and feel good about my body, especially the time and effort I put into it now. But just as far as thinking the game, reading the game, and the technique I use, I’m four years older and more experienced.
Q: How difficult was your rehab? Was it the biggest challenge of your career?
Definitely. The time immediately after the surgery was pretty crazy pain-wise, and just getting used to that. I’m missing a bone in my lower leg and they kind of hacked and whacked at it. It’s amazing how much pain and how crazy that part was, and it’s amazing how great it came back, and how I don’t notice it now. I take care of it preventatively, but I don’t notice it. So to come from that much pain and such a crazy process coming back to feeling fine and dandy is pretty amazing for me.
Q: Did Paul Holmgren tell you you’ll be in competition with Steve Mason, and are you excited to have a shot at being a #1 goalie?
Yeah, I’m excited. I haven’t talked specifics with Homer. I skate with Mase in the summer. He’s just around the corner from my place in Toronto. He’s a great young goalie. He’s a guy who started off as a Calder [Trophy] winner, I think, if I’m not wrong. He’s a guy who’s had success and he’s going to continue to get better. I just look at it as kind of a tandem relationship. Last year with me and Corey in [Chicago], it was more about the team success and we both kind of helped each other get better. As far as I know, that’s the best way to treat a goaltending relationship. I’m excited to work with him, teach him what I know about the game and what I’ve learned about the game, and I’m excited to work with a great young goalie. Whenever I evolve, I end up watching the young guys, because they’re kind of the pioneers. You go and watch these young kids, they’re amazing in net. I’m just excited to work together with Steve.
Q: Did the Flyers make that a point, working with Mason?
No, we didn’t talk about that, really. They know what to expect from my last time there. They know I really want the team to do well, and that was kind of it. It was more about how it was going to work and that was it.
Q: What swayed you to come to Philly?
To be honest, it’s a situation where Chicago looks like Corey’s got one year left there, and he’s probably going to end up making 5 or 6 million for the next little while. I feel the writing was on the wall in Chicago as far as myself goes. In Philadelphia, it would be a new situation for both me and Steve. Going forward, it’s a chance to maybe play more games than I would have in Chicago. It’s a great team and it’s a situation that I knew from the last time I was there that I was really comfortable, and anytime I go to a place… I just kind of left myself with a funny taste in my mouth about my experience there. I’m not saying that it wasn’t enjoyable, I’m just saying that I really felt like we could have done better, and I could have done better, than what was done there. That’s a huge thing. John Paddock’s the guy I started my pro career with as a coach, and I’ve followed him along the way. He’s a guy I really like working with, and I really want to do well with him. The whole organization… I really had great relationships in the organization.
Q: Are you better equipped for a goaltending partnership now than you were when you were younger?
I think I’ve kind of changed my outlook. When I was younger I wanted to play all the games, and got a pouty attitude when I didn’t. Now, you start to realize that if the team is successful, that everyone does well. It’s a better working relationship that way. It’s kind of a different philosophy. You learn and you grow and that’s where I’m at. It’s fun having a great group of guys and everyone gets along well, and especially sharing success.
Yeah, but he wants to start.
I’m not sure under what circumstance anyone from the Flyers would make such a blanket statement, but we’ll keep this in mind. Maybe Sam’s right… maybe he’s being used.
This just happened. Wendy’s Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger. Very good. Some sort of special sauce with bacon, tomato, lettuce, onion. I’d put salt on the bun because that’s the best part of most “pretzel sandwiches,” and I’d make the special sauce a bit more mustardy to give it that hint of German-Bavarian-style flavor. I found myself reaching for ketchup. That said, it was gone in 90 seconds. Highly recommended.
It has looked for a little while like the Flyers wouldn’t get Bobby Ryan. Now we can stop talking about him. Bruce Garrioch is reporting that he’ll go to the Senators, for two draft picks. https://twitter.com/SunGarrioch/status/353233536314114048
Ottawa…. Im coming in hot
— Bobby Ryan (@b_ryan9) July 5, 2013
Was there just a commercial for JDate on the Shield Network? I can’t imagine there’s much overlap in the hardcore hockey fan-Jewish guy looking for love demos.
BUT BUT BOBBY RYAN WAS SUPPOSED TO BE OUR FLYER, HE’S FROM NEW JERSEY, LIKES US. A MODERN DAY MIKE TROUT, HE IS. OUR OWN. COME BACK, BOBBY. COME. BACK. WAH.
Every type OB Flyers fan right now. They’ll fail to mention that, save for his weird injured year in 2012 (when he won the Cup), Jeff Carter has been the better scorer. In other words: you can’t be that hurt over the Ryan thing if you don’t really care that the Flyers traded Carter.
Missed this a few minutes ago. Tim Panaccio, who blocked me on Twitter, reports that the Flyers and Simon Gagne have agreed on MONEY. I missed it because Tim Panaccio, who blocked me on Twitter, blocked me on Twitter.
The consensus need for the Flyers last season was defense. So why have they only added very offensive defenseman Mark Streit and no one else? Lecavalier? Fine. Two backup goalies on top of their other backup goalie? Fine. But how about a defensive defenseman? Surely that’s coming…? Please?
They’re going give Simon Gagne $2 million to get hurt next year and not get a solid d-man. Just thinking out loud here.
Not looking good for the Flyers doing Gagne a favor:
Holmgren on Gagne: "It's pretty difficult to say right now. We don't have a lot of cap space."
— Frank Seravalli (@DNFlyers) July 5, 2013