Anthony and I sat down on Monday with Flyers GM Ron Hextall for an exclusive interview on Snow the Goalie. Nearly two months after seeing his team’s season come to an end at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Hextall reflected on the Flyers’ season, the Phantoms’ playoff run, gave us a glimpse into his off-season planning and what he looks for in a potential Philadelphia Flyer. The following clip is a preview of the interview that will be featured on Wednesday morning’s episode. In it, I asked Hextall just how important character is in the team’s evaluation of a player.
“I mean character is huge, because I always tell our scouts, the person ends up dictating whether a player meets his potential; that’s reality. If you’ve got a good human being that’s a character guy that really cares about playing hockey, chances are he’s going to reach his potential. Right? If you’ve got a guy that gets distracted, he’s got all these other things going on in his life and hockey’s important, but maybe not quite as important, he’s not going to hit his ceiling so these are the things you have got to find out. And when we’re doing research on free agents and different things like that, we’re trying to figure out the whole package, not just, okay, the player goes out there and scores, you know, he’s a 15 goal scorer and typically gets 40 points. Okay, that’s what he is. Well, let’s look at all the other stuff. Now, how’s he going to fit in with our group? Is he going to complement our group? Is he going to be happy in a role? Is he gonna help other players push other players, you know, choose to be a part of a team? Choosing to be a part of a team is a huge deal. Look at Vegas, the great example, right? They were the best team in the National Hockey League this year? No question about it. Were they the best talent? Fair to say that they probably weren’t no disrespect, but they were the best team. That’s why they went to the Stanley Cup finals, so that whole buying in the team thing, hockey is… Obviously we all have families first, but after that it’s hockey. That’s what we want. We want guys that are, that are here to play hockey, to be pros, to represent our organization and the be the best they can be on a nightly basis.”