By: Steve Johnson
Despite the Flyers 4-0 win tonight vs the Colorado Avalanche, they are still likely to be sellers at tomorrow’s NHL trade deadline. The truth of the matter is that the same team that had a 10 game winning streak at the beginning of the season, are still in a rebuilding mode. I think that’s a fair assessment, and something even the most die hard fans would agree with. What most of them might not agree with, is that almost everyone on the team is available tomorrow…including Captain Claude Giroux. At the deadline, the Flyers stand at 29-26-7, 65 points (4 back in the wild card race). Although that might not seem like a lot, keep in mind how hot they were at the beginning of the year. The Flyers are 3-6-1 in their last 10, 9-12-3 since New years. They’re a middle of the pack team with a lot of young talent, and some expendable pieces that can be moved to continue to build a bright future. Here’s a look at some possible players that could be traded and why.
Obviously, he’s the Flyers best player and he’s the captain. G has had a bad year, a -18 on the year with only 12 goals. This isn’t a reflection on his play. Is he declining? Maybe. Will he be the same player when the Flyers are competing for a cup? Who knows. To trade a player like Claude Giroux, you’d have to be completely blown away. But value is value, and there’s only a few players in the NHL who are untouchable (he’s not one of them).
The revolving door that is the Flyers goaltender continues. Reports suggest backup goalie Michael Neuvirth might receive a contract extention, which could mean Mason could be dealt tomorrow. Mason has had his worst season as a Flyer this year, with a .900 save percentage and 2.90 GAA. Of course not all of it has been his fault, the defense in front of him has been shaky at best. At times, Neuvirth has looked like a capable starter but he can’t stay healthy. The Flyers do have Jersey native Anthony Stolarz, and like him a lot.
Defensemen Not Named Ivan Provorov
The Flyers have a lot of young defensemen in their farm system. Sam Morin, Travis Sanheim, Mark Alt, and Robert Hagg are all close to being NHL ready. This makes veterans like Mark Streit, Michael Del Zotto, Nick Schultz, and Andrew MacDonald available for trade. Del Zotto, Streit and Schultz are all free agents after this year, and could held a team looking for a veteran defensemen for a cup run. MacDonald would be a little bit harder to dump, with 3 more years at $5 million each due after this year.