The NHL season is only three weeks old but in a shortened season, that doesn’t leave a lot of room for error. For the Philadelphia Flyers they’ve had plenty of errors to start the season and have sputtered out of the gates through their first nine games to a 3-6-0 record, good enough for 14th in the Eastern Conference.
Considered by many as Stanley Cup contenders heading into this season, the Flyers have been anything but and now management may be ready to shake things up by making a splash in the trade waters.
According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, via Twitter, the trade rumors around the league are just that; rumors. Garrioch says the trade market is quiet to date with most GM’s not ready to hit the panic button or they don’t feel the need to make a roster addition just yet.
But Flyers’ GM, Paul Holmgren doesn’t appear to fit in that above category as Garrioch reports that Holmgren is busy working the phones, trying to get a feel for who’s available and for what price.
Either player would make any roster instantly better and both could be available this season but will come at a cost.
Iginla, 35, has struggled mightily to start the year, collecting just 4 assists through the team’s first six games. An unrestricted free-agent at the end of this season, it’s expected that the Flames will move Iginla if the team is out of the playoffs come the April 3rd trade deadline.
But with a shortened season, many clubs will still be in the hunt for the postseason come early April and unless the Flames continue to struggle, it’s hard to fathom Jay Feaster moving the team’s franchise player this early. Unless he’s presented with a return package full of youth that he’d be foolish to turn down.
Meanwhile, there are rumors that the Flyers may be interested in going after Anaheim Ducks sniper, Bobby Ryan. Much younger than Iginla at 25, Ryan comes with a cap hit of $5.1 million for the next two seasons. Granted he’s locked up for two more years and Iginla could walk into free-agency this summer, making Ryan the more attractable of the two.
Either player will cost an arm and a leg to lure away from their club, especially at this time of year. The Ducks are playing well and may not want to upset their nucleus while the Flames could get on a hot streak, led by their captain and turn things around in a hurry.
These are merely rumors at this point and don’t have a lot of merit behind them. There is a lot of speculation surrounding the Flyers right now and while we know that Holmgren is working the phones, Iginla and/or Ryan are what the fans want. That doesn’t always escalate in to what the team wants or what they’ll do.