The Philadelphia Flyers have successfully shocked the hockey world, pulling two simultaneous blockbuster deals and signing Ilya Bryzgolov all in the span of 20 minutes. They have seriously changed the face of the franchise, and there’s no going back!
(Deal A) Superstar forward Jeff Carter was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets for Jakub Voracek, a first round pick (eighth overall), and a third round pick. Voracek (GP 241, G 39, A 95, P 134) is a former 7th overall selection from the 2007 draft class.
(Deal B) Captain Mike Richards was sent to the Los Angeles Kings for Brayden Schenn, Wayne Simmonds and a 2nd round pick. Schenn is the prize in this deal. Brayden Schenn was rated the number one prospect outside of the NHL by The Hockey News. Everybody remembers what this kid was able to do for Canada at the world Junior Hockey Championships with 18 points to lead all players, receiving MVP honors.
The byproduct of these two dynamic deals… the Flyers proceeded to sign Ilya Bryzgalov to a nine-year, $51 million contract. Bryzgalov is the goalie that Flyers fans have always dreamed of, but no one dreamed of a change in the overall landscape this big. There was lots of speculation about a Carter deal the past few weeks, but the Richards deal no one saw coming!
Carter and Richards both played six seasons with Philly. They started their careers in the 2005-06 season and went on to produce a total of 692 points in 914 games with the franchise. Bryzgalov had a .921 SV% last season with Phoenix. This deal may go on to help all the teams involved.
Some Flyers faithful have to be feeling pretty shocked that Jeff Carter is gone as he had 11 years remaining on his contract with the club. As nice as the package is, I doubt any of the players will be able to replace Carter’s scoring ability.
This type of move proves that the Philadelphia Flyers are serious about addressing the goaltending issue. Fans in Philly will truly get to test the experiment: is a star goalie worth more than a star player? If you are the Columbus Blue Jackets or Los Angeles Kings, you are telling the rest of the National Hockey League: Watch out!
These types of moves signal that you want to be serious contenders now. It will be Kopitar and Richards in Los Angeles, Nash and Carter in Columbus. Those are potentially two of the most dangerous combinations in the game!
“Jeff is a proven number one center in the National Hockey League and we look forward to him having many productive seasons as a Blue Jacket,” GM Scott Howson said in a team release.
“We felt at this stage of the franchise it was time to make a significant move for an impact player,” Lombardi said in a team release. “Mike Richards is not only one of the top players in the league, he’s also universally recognized as one of the finer leaders in the game and one of its elite competitors.”