I’m Going to Defend Marcus Hayes, Even If He Is a Big, Fat Hypocrite

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Marcus Hayes, the sportswriter equivalent of a poop Emoji, yesterday wrote about how to fix the Flyers, at the request of his editors. His suggestion: trade Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek:

It just seems foolish to waste two players’ prime years on a team destined for mediocrity. They will be relentlessly ground down the next two seasons, assuming Voracek stays, while the Flyers are hopelessly outclassed by at least five or six other clubs in the Eastern Conference and by at least as many in the West.

Two bad deals brought the Flyers costly, faded stars at forward. Bad luck cost them veteran defensemen.

That is the past.

Trading Giroux and Voracek frames the future.

For context: Hayes went on Anthony SanFilippo’s The Scoop Philly last night to talk about his point (1:08:00 mark). He made it clear that the how to fix the Flyers thing was an assignment from his editors and that he wasn’t taking shots at Voracek or Giroux (whom he called his favorite player to watch), but rather was simply suggesting one way to fix the team. “[Trade them for] younger players or draft picks or whatever,” Hayes told SanFilippo.

Fair enough. And it’s not a bad idea. 

As sports fans, especially with players as beloved as Giroux and Voracek, we become enamored with stars, but more and more lately we’re seeing Moneyball-esque evidence that selling high on big names could pay off. The Red Sox blew up their team in 2012 and won with a made-over, less-star-laden club in 2013. The Blackhawks traded a bunch of guys after winning the Stanley Cup in 2010, and then got right back there just a few years later. The Phillies Giroux and Voracek are fan favorites, but G has a massive cap hit and Voracek will if he re-signs after next season. Each player would net the Flyers a significant haul for their rebuilding efforts. Quite frankly, it’s the same argument type OBs used to defend the Richards and Carter trades (in hindsight, largely correctly). But now Voracek is the star who has value and could himself be used to land a couple of draft picks and young prospects, even if it would drive fans crazy (until they drank the kool-aid and were totally cool with it OMG youuuur so dum for dissaggreeeing). Ditto for G.

Hayes, on The Scoop Philly, explained the impassioned nature of hardcore Flyers fans:

“The other thing is, there’s very little similar [to] the affinity that hockey fans have for their favorite player, because hockey players play so hard. You become invested in these guys. Every single Flyers fan likes their Flyer the way Phillies fans like Chase Utley. You’ve got 25 Chase Utleys playing hockey. And if you aren’t Chase Utley, you are absolutely despised. There is no room for half stepping in hockey. So the connection with the fans whether [it be] a tough go-getter, a super talented guy like Giroux … a hyper-talented guy like Voracek … the loyalty there is exponential compared to other sports.”

He’s spot-on. I’m going to call that the Zac Rinaldo Corollary— type OBs defend Rinaldo because he trys hard!, but largely ignore the fact that he is dumb and sucks.

Hayes’ points are good ones and would carry more weight if they existed in a vacuum. Unfortunately for Marcus, he wouldn’t fit inside even the largest industrial strength wet-dry vac, ergo we have to take into account his previous musings– specifically his continuous criticism of the Sixers. Upon further inspection, his critiques have been more targeted than the simplistic the Sixers owe it to fans to put a good product on the court argument used by the likes of Howard Eskin and even our friend Tony Bruno, but this is still a guy who argued that the Sixers owed it to mediocre Thad Young to re-sign him (Hinkie has turned Young into a whole bunch of assets). So you can’t, in one breath, claim that the Flyers need to blow it up and rebuild, and in another, criticize the Sixers for doing exactly the same thing. “What the Sixers have done… is way over the line as far as I’m concerned,” Hayes said. But really, how can you fault a team for fully buying into a suggested strategy? If you’re going to do that sort of thing, you have to own it. Chip Kelly is owning, Sam Hinkie is owning it, and Marcus, it seems, wants the Flyers to own it. But he can’t selective take that view without seeming like a big, fat hypocrite.


65 Responses

  1. Never a better time to trade Voracek. He had a very good year and he’s not going to replicate it.

    I’m ok trading Giroux.

    Use both to rid yourself of your corps of 40 year old $6mm defensemen and burn this thing to the ground so you can call up the youth

    1. Does your last sentence make any sense? Please explain how getting rid of your two best offensive players will help fix the defense especially since your best minor league prospects are defensemen.

        1. Maybe he means you package the defensemen with Voracek and Giroux, and make the deal more palatable to another team. The Flyers won’t get near the talent they would in return had they just dealt Vorocek or Giroux alone, but you’d at least be able to dump some of the salary that’s weighing them down.

          1. Yeah great idea, give up your two best players just to dump salary cap and get less of a return than you would get if you traded them individually.

            Thats really gonna get this team over the hump… getting rid of good players to in turn shed some salary cap and get sub-par prospects in return.

      1. Part of the problem is a huge part of the cap is made up of untradeable, overpaid defensemen. You can’t send them down or bench them, thus the young guys are stuck behind them.

        Not too difficult.

        1. The young defensemen are not stuck. They are not ready to play in NHL. Overlooking even that, I don’t see how trading your two best offensive players is ever a good idea. Flyers did that once before and how has that worked out? Players as skilled as Giroux are rare in the league and even more so coming out of the Flyers organization.

      1. Hahaha played out but glad your on here, whats the clock looking like with Pitt trading Sid and/or Malkin and/or Letang and/or Fleury? That team is just about 1-2 years from being in same albeit worse situation cap wise…..if its not already facing those same questions now with the team barely alive in the playoff race……

        But yes keep saying #1975 and let that bad karma continue to mount…..

      2. 1975, 30 years before Penguins fans started watching hockey. Funny, you’ll brag about the 3 cups they’ve won but you don’t brag about the 3 times they’ve had to file for bankruptcy. I really hope this is the guy whose Penguins bumper sticker I’ve ripped off his car 5 times in the past year.

  2. Voracheck and Giroux are untouchable. The guy to trade who you will never get higher value for because he’s stellar in pressure-free meaningless games but folds like a tent when the heat is on and he is also easily replaceable: Steve Mason.

    If I had any faith in the “youth” the Flyers have now I may be okay with burning it to the ground and starting over. But these so called blue chip prospects are never going to make it to the NHL at least not as guys to build a team around.

    1. Why so negative, man? What’s the fun in being a pissy fan?

      Mason crushed it in the first round of the playoffs last year, and could of been a trophy contending goalie last year and this year had there been a functioning defense in front of him. Coaching definitely needs to change. Some of the decisions have been downright horrible. Wouldn’t miss Voracek and Giroux barring a massive haul.

    2. If Gretzky wasnt untouchable, Giroux and Voracek are also not untouchable even if Gretzky’s was under different circumstances.

  3. The Blackhawks may have traded away players after the ’10 Cup but they didn’t trade their best players away. (Kane, Toews, Sharp, Keith) Trading away Giroux and Voracek wouldn’t be the same thing as what they did at all. You have to build around them, draft good young talent, sign good players (not players like Lecavalier). I’m a big fan of the flyers but I don’t know one person who wants to keep Rinaldo. He is terrible player. Any person that says otherwise in the comment sections is likely being sarcastic.

    1. Flyers are at best 3 years away from having a group of players that can form a competitive team. By then Giroux will be starting on his dissent and not worth the huge $$ he’s getting.

      Voracek is a good player, but not a great one.

      1. I think it’s time for my comeback. I will mend the wounds of my opponents with hemp after I smash there faces in!

      2. dissent. seriously. i just called your mother and she agreed to send u back to school.

  4. I’m a band wagon jumper so I obviously know what’s best for the flyers. Hopefully Marcus Hayes can get me to sweat too so I can lose a couple hundred pounds. I’m a hack.

  5. G is the most overrated player in hockey. trade him for a nice collection of young players

    1. If he’s overrated, then how will you get a “nice collection of young players” in return?

    2. Giroux has more points than anyone in the NHL over the last five seasons.

      He’s having a “down” year this season, yet he still has 25 goals and 72 points and is 9th the NHL in scoring. It’s pretty astounding that him and Voracek have the numbers they do this season considering they don’t really have a left winger.

      Giroux put the team on his back last season and gives 100% every shift. Maybe he’s not a Top 5 forward in the NHL, but I don’t think you can argue he’s not Top 10.

  6. To my loyal Flyers Fans,

    Thanks for your support. What other group of fans would go 40 years without a Cup and still worship me? Keep drinking the orange kool aid.


    1. I can think of a Fan base that will blindly follow you even when you win nothing…

  7. You don’t trade Giroux and Voracek. You build around them. They have some good young D in the system, they have a really good goalie…they need a couple more scorers. The Schenn brothers have to go.

    Fixing the Flyers isn’t as tall of a task as it seems, but it has to start at the top. I like “The Chief”, but he has to go.

    1. Where ya getting ‘a couple of more scorers’ without any money?

      Flyers don’t have any pure goal scorers.

  8. Also, Marcus Hayes sucks and I’ll never see him as anything but a local Steven A. Smith/Skip Bayless type.

    Tell us again how Griffey took roids Marcus. That’s my favorite.

    1. Nail on the head. He just trolls to he can be “edgy”, then people like Kyle will retweet or comment on what he says, and he can keep his job because he gets exposure. He wasn’t this douchey 10 years ago, no idea what happened.

    1. You traded me and a 2nd round pick for Dan Carcillo.

      burn the entire front office down. Hexy is a start, really made some great signings in Del Zotto and White.

      but still, you know he is just a Snider puppet

      1. If people are going to attempt to be clever and comment as players, at least spell the names right…Upshall.

  9. This is what I would do in the offseason if I were Hextall:

    -I am not 100% of the new salary cap rules from the latest CBA, but I believe since they signed Vinny before he was 35 years old, they can buy out his remaining 3 years and it won’t affect the cap? Or they can force him to retire, and give him a job working for the team. Either way, they have to get that 5 million dollar a year cap hit off this team because its preventing them from going after any big time free agents.

    -Trade the Schenn Brothers. Now Brayden Schenn does not have the value he once had, as I believe he will never be that #4 overall pick from the Kings. But the national pundits have said that teams still have interest in them as a package deal.

    -Go with the young Defensemen next year (Samuel Morin – ‎Travis Sanheim – ‎Shayne Gostisbehere – ‎Robert Hagg) and see what you have from them.

    -Look to make RJ Umberger-like trade with Andrew McDonald. They traded Hartnell for Umberger, so they got a lesser player in return with less years on his contract.

    -If you are able to clear enough Salary to make a run at a big time free agent, I would go after Center Carl Soderberg (Boston Bruins), Left wing Matt Beleskey (Anaheim Ducks), or Center Mike Ribeiro (Nashville Predators).

    -And the Flyers need to stop overvaluing guys like Matt Read who are a dime a dozen in this league, and can be replaced very easily.

    1. yea i mostly agree here, holmgren got fleeced in the JVR deal. The young guys that were supposed to develop have not, yet they should have by now. the top guy on my shit list is Couterier, motherfucker skates like he shit himself “ohhhh but he’s the next Ron Francis”. the Schenn brothers are hopeless, especially Luke, i have never seen a guy so unaware on the ice. It’s starting to look like Amaro territory where he’s trying to convince himself Dom Brown can be a highly productive player. I like the young defensmen they have in the minors, but this team was fucked a long time ago and will be for a few more years

    2. If only it were that simple to get Lecavalier off the cap but it’s not going to happen unless another team trades for him. There’s no way he’s going to retire. And they can’t just buy him out without having it affect the cap. What you’re talking about there is the amnesty provision, but each team only got to make two amnesty player releases and we already used them for Bryz and Briere. Either way, they couldn’t use it on Vinny because he signed his deal AFTER the current CBA anyway.

  10. Giroux is 27 and Voracek is 25…so even if we’re 3 years ago, basic math tells us that they’ll be 30 & 28, respectively. To say Voracek can’t replicate this season is just plain stupid. He isn’t an overachieving late round pick that the Flyers got lucky on, he was a 7th overall pick that the Flyers targeted when they traded Carter. “Lets take our 2 best players; the majority of our offensive output and trade them for prospects that may never be as good as what we currently have.” Yeah, great plan.

    1. 30 is old

      Vorcek had an abnormal number of assists this year, most of them in the first half of the year.

      first 40 games: .375 goals per game, .825 assists per game
      2nd 40 games: .175 goals per game, .350 assists per game

      Career: .23 goals per game, .47 assist per game

      The numbers show he’s a 20-25 goal, 40-45 assist per year type player. He just was hot early.

      But you’re a sucker and think he’s awesome. If you were the GM you’d give him a Homer deal

      1. Settle down Bill James, you can’t use sabermetrics like it’s baseball…there’s more complexity with hockey. PP/PK/linemates/Ice time/etc. Also, 30 isn’t old for hockey…he isn’t a running back. Career spans in hockey are longer than any other major sport.

        1. How many players over 30 in the top 10 of scoring this year? 3 times in the last thirty years has a 30+ year old skater won the Hart.

          And if averages are sabermetrics to you, you need to head back to 6th grade.

          1. So a Hart is the measure stick of success? Nigerian, please. Jarome Iginla, Martin St. Louis, Rod Brind’Amour and Mark Recchi all had solid seasons well into their mid-late 30’s. Don’t be that asshole that responds to me with “So you’re saying Voracek is a future Hall Of Famer???”. Point being, it’s stupid to trade a 25 year old forward who is going to finish in the top 5 in scoring because you think it was an anomaly. Dude wasn’t a trade “throw in” type like LeClair, that we just happened to get lucky on. Also, who’s your trading partner? Defense is so thin in the NHL that it would take an overpayment to land a top 10. Outside of Doughty, Karlsson, Subban, Weber and maybe Josi…who are you going to get? Chara, Carlson, Yandle or Wideman?…THAT would be a Homer move. Only in Philadelphia do you discredit everything positive with an athlete. “Voracek will finish 3rd in scoring.” “Yeah, but he sucks…he couldn’t finish 1st…he had a lucky season.” Fuck outta here…

          2. You ignore the stats about, but let’s look at realty.

            Giroux’s best year for pts/game? AGE 24! 1.21

            He’s declined since

            1.00, 1.05, 0.91

          3. That was also a season in which he played with Jaromir Jagr.

            Also you haven’t mentioned that the NHL as a whole has had a decline in points to the current year due to changes in the game and how obstruction is called.

            Face it stat-warrior you don’t actually watch the game.

          1. “Again, I want to stress that some players age better than others and there’s lots of randomness layered on top of that. This is a population average, not a hard-and-fast rule.”

            Clearly it’s possible, but not a guarantee. The same odds could be calculated that the player(s) you get in return for Giroux and/or Voracek won’t produce the same numbers that they do. Even if you don’t think Giroux is a top 5 player in the league, why trade a top 10-15 for someone with “potential”. Hockey has as many misses as baseball when it comes to prospects…not worth the risk.

          2. There isn’t a risk.

            The Flyers are currently nothing with the future prospects of nothing.

            What exactly are you risking by trading Giroux?

            Ohh you may REALLY miss the playoffs instead of just missing the playoffs.

      2. Anyone that knows anything about advanced stats knew that voracek was due for a breakout year. His puck possession numbers have always been in the elite range. This isn’t exactly a fluke year. Looking at stats such as goals and assists per game do not give an accurate picture of what is happening. You might as well throw in his plus/minus statistics.

  11. Yo, dis be yo main man Sean Brace, looking for a new gig. Any chance the lovely ice ladies need someone to join their squad? I’m available!

  12. G is most overrated player in NHL n they should remove the C from his jersey. But they’re scared of a discrimination lawsuit

  13. If you can trade them and your first pick this year for a combination of prospects and the top pick to land McDavid? Ill drive them to the airport.

  14. I love how posts that basically say “you suck at covering hockey” get deleted, even if after that they are on topic.

    But half of this other trash is allowed.

    Just stupid.

  15. Years of trolling Flyers fans and you admit you’re wrong with a buried “in hindsight, largely correctly?” Soft. So soft. Do a full post on how you were wrong and they sold high for once and restocked their system with those deals. The real botch jobs by Homer were not maximizing JVR’s value, letting Carle walk, and contracts for Vinny, MacDonald, and Grossman. Also, I’ll take Homer as my GM way before I’d take Jay Wright as my coach with two minutes left in a game. Thx!

    1. I don’t mind the Grossmann trade. He’s slow, but he moves bodies from in front of the net and blocks a lot of shots. I do, however, have a problem with Holmgren resigning him to the tune of $3.5M/year. He’s a solid 5/6 defenseman, but he doesn’t deserve anywhere near that kind of cap hit.

  16. Kyle your site has sucked all week. 90% of the articles have been completely irrelevant

  17. Kyle/Jim could you please post something about sheena parveen or jillian mele or eva pilgrim or alex holley or joyce or cecily t. or any of the other hot philly news sluts?

  18. Why the fuck would a supposedly reputable daily newspaper ask fat racist idiot Marcus Hayes to write about hockey?

  19. In Hextall I fully trust…. Snider is leaving him alone thus far ….as to date every move hes made has worked out (Del Zotto-White-Schultz signings (now Schultz contract is supposed to be stopgate to the youngsters coming up), trading Timonen/Coburn for picks and a half decent (yet TBD) dman Gudas).

    This offseason I sense L. Schenn is moved and perhaps Rinaldo is finally let go (WAAHOOO!) and perhaps more at draft.

    We have a goalie now so I would realllllllllly like us NOT to rebuild and rather tweak, move around and just draft well this offseason and next…. the foundation has started and were not near as far off as the Sixers were….

  20. How did you miss the part where he called the players “25 Chase Utleys” and all fans “wanting them to play like Chase Utleys?”

    Clearly he was stating that all hockey fans and players are white, how racist!

    Also, isn’t it amazing how hockey posts bring about intelligent conversations on here?

  21. The 2010 Blackhawks didn’t exactly trade away Toews & Kane.

    As this post goes to show, his take on trading G & Jake did the one thing it was intended to do – get attention & put eyes on the page/get clicks. Period.

    It was a stupid idea as far as the actual merits of the idea are concerned.

    If there is a PA hockey club that should consider trading one or more of it’s superstar players, it’s the Penguins, not the Flyers.

  22. I don’t agree trade both –but Vorachek –I’d Def see what’s out there for him—he will never be worth more than he is right now–coming off a high point total ( I don’t see him ever being top 8 again–similar to Jeff Carters one 47 goal year)—-he will command huge money after next year7-9 mil per year–not saying def do it–but should be explored—giroux I thunk should stay

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