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UFA spotlight – Matt Carle

Jun 27, 2012, 5:31 PM EDT

Philadelphia Flyers v Pittsburgh Penguins - Game Five Getty Images

All week leading up to Sunday, July 1, we’ll be profiling unrestricted free agents and speculating where they might end up.

Matt Carle (D)

Age: 27

2011-12 cap hit: $3.44 million

The skinny:

Perception regarding Matt Carle could very well range rapidly if he hits unrestricted free agency. Many view him as a turnover-prone defenseman with solid offensive ability who benefited greatly from Chris Pronger‘s presence. Others go as far as to compare him to Ryan Suter (seriously).

The truth is probably somewhere in between, but either way, it would be surprising if the Philadelphia Flyers don’t end up re-signing him. To the surprise of some, GM Paul Holmgren said that bringing Carle back is a higher priority than gaining another year of Jaromir Jagr‘s services. Nothing new seems to contradict that earlier report, either.

Still, there should be a solid market for Carle if Philly balks at his asking price. And considering what Dennis Wideman got from the Calgary Flames, that asking price might’ve just gone up.

Ansar Khan labels Carle a solid Plan B if the Detroit Red Wings can’t land Suter.

More UFA spotlights

Ryan Suter

Zach Parise

Jason Garrison

Jiri Hudler

Justin Schultz

Shane Doan

Alexander Semin

  1. phillyphever - Jun 27, 2012 at 6:02 PM

    Don’t bother with the broadstreethockey guys. They really have a serious man-crush on Carle. He’s gonna get a GM fired for overpaying for his services. Trust me, he’s not worth what Wideman got (or what Suter’s gonna get).

    • phillyphever - Jun 27, 2012 at 6:03 PM

      Basically, if you want a guy for their turnovers, you’re better off ordering a pi-zone from Pizza Hut. It’s cheaper than Carle.

  2. hockeyfootball98 - Jun 27, 2012 at 6:37 PM

    I think Carle is better than Flyer fans give him credit for. Im a flyer fan but I agree anything over 4.5mil/yr is an overpayment and Im not sure Homer is ready to pay more than that. Still have holes to fill and not a ton of money to spend.

    • mcnish101 - Jun 27, 2012 at 6:58 PM

      Flyers have Lots of money to spend.

      Pronger going on LITR waves his cap hit, gives the flyers a little over 16 million bucks to get a backup goalie(less then a mill – get biron back at 875,000), a top 6 defencemen ( carle at 4.25 or 5m is fine) Vorececk back at 3.3. and thats more then enough to take a major run at parise or a shane doan.

      Sign Carle, grab a big name forward, keep calm and win the cup

      • phillyphever - Jun 27, 2012 at 7:12 PM

        So, how would a forward address that black hole that’s a #1 defensemen? Cut ties with Carle and go hard after Shea Weber.

      • mcnish101 - Jun 27, 2012 at 7:27 PM


        29 teams in the nhl would kill for a 6 deep Defence like this.

        losing jagr and JVR hurts the flyers up front.

        Trying to steal shea weber is over 7 million bucks for sure, and as an RFA any offer they give can be matched. with Giroux contract comming up in 2 years having an anchor of a 7 million dollar defencemen really hurts the future.

        Save the cash, have a 6 deep d that you can roll lines instead of 3 guys playing 25+ minutes a night.

      • phillyphever - Jun 27, 2012 at 9:35 PM

        Oh yeah, lets forget about the last three cup winners that had game changers on D (Keith, Chara and Doughty). Face it, they’re gonna need a #1 soon with Pronger done and Kimmo’s contract ending next season.

  3. phillyphan83 - Jun 27, 2012 at 7:41 PM

    Carle is garbage, he was on the ice for over 70% of all goals scored against us in the playoffs. That speaks volumes. Let him walk and good luck to whoever over pays for him. Good riddance.

    • obamablowz - Jun 27, 2012 at 9:51 PM

      70% of goals against in playoffs? he was a -3 and in the years in philadelphia is a + 55……please post where you got your’re stats from because I didn’t see it.

  4. phillyphan83 - Jun 27, 2012 at 7:42 PM

    mcnish…ever heard of this guy named Couturier??? two thumbs up for you!

  5. flyers22 - Jun 27, 2012 at 8:04 PM

    Carle is not that bad of a player i know he seemed to turn the puck over a lot this year but his numbers are very similar to suter and suter was playing with weber one of the best in the league. When carle was with pronger he looked like the real deal, he just needs to be paired with the right person, someone who can take the pressure off of him. No one knows how suter is gonna play next year without him but we all know how overpaid he is going to be. Carle is the only one left out there worth signing and he already said he would sign at a home town discount so he can stay in philly. Unless we can sign Schultz, no one else out there is worth going after on D. Make a run for parise or doan and call it a day, voracek is closed to being resigned and just let the youth take over from there

  6. 81rebel - Jun 27, 2012 at 8:18 PM

    Carle’s brutal , I’d rather have a slower, more physical Hal Gill then the Turnover Machine any day.

    • flyers22 - Jun 27, 2012 at 8:33 PM

      that dude has glass bones at this point in his career he wont bring anything more then lilja would other then he is more physical but we have luke schenn now who can toss people i really think luke playing with his brother is going to bring out the best in him and finally live up to the hype.

  7. flyeredup - Jun 27, 2012 at 8:22 PM

    We have to keep Carle.

  8. 81rebel - Jun 27, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    LOL@ Luke Schenn , dont get too excited about having him … he was only brought in to be with his over rated little pansy brother, this is going to be a longggg couple of years in South Philly

  9. jinx2020 - Jun 27, 2012 at 9:00 PM

    To everyone who complained about Carle in the playoffs…I’d like to see you even get out of bed with a torn abdominal muscle.

    • phillyphever - Jun 27, 2012 at 9:32 PM

      Yeah, he still stunk healthy or not.

    • wicky888 - Jun 28, 2012 at 10:44 AM

      How long has it been torn, 5 years?

  10. ml3939 - Jun 27, 2012 at 9:38 PM

    Matt Carle- turns the puck over too much, not a great skater, shoots wide, does not shoot hard, benefited from playing with Chris Pronger (who wouldn’t), gets plenty of space on the power play which gives him many more passing lanes and shot opportunities because of the other talent on the ice. Decent puck handler. Gotta love the balance between those pro’s and con’s.

  11. greggoldberg - Jun 27, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    The constant criticisms of Carle are hilarious. “OH HE TURNS THE PUCK OVER TOO MUCH!” Any defenseman who plays as many minutes and in as many situations as he does will turn the puck over a lot. Karlsson, Chara and Doughty all had more giveaways than Carle this past year. So did Girardi, Seabrook, Carlson, Burns, Yandle, and several other very good defensemen. Do their fans constantly berate those guys as turnover machines? It’s really not a big deal.

    “OH BUT HES SO SOFT!” He never misses any games. He blocked more shots than anyone on the Flyers this year. He didn’t hit a bunch of guys, but if that’s all you can come up with, who cares? Not hitting guys is not a sign of a bad defenseman/player.

    “HE CAN’T SHOOT! HIS SHOT NEVER MAKES IT TO THE GOALIE! IT ALWAYS GETS BLOCKED!” He put more shots on goal than Coburn, Timonen, or any Flyers D-man. No, his shot isn’t spectacular, but (a) most defensemen don’t have a spectacular shot, and (b) he’s a lock for 35 or so points a year, which is very good for a defenseman, so who cares whether he’s scoring on them or assisting them? He freaking led NHL defensemen in even-strength points two years ago. I don’t care how he gets them–he’s producing offense. That’s not deniable.

    “WELL HE ISN’T AS GOOD WITHOUT PRONGER NEXT TO HIM!” Um…duh? Pronger is one of the best defensemen of the last two decades. He’s a Hall of Famer. There are zero defensemen in the NHL who wouldn’t be better without him next to them. And guess what: even without him, Carle can still play. Marc-Andre Bourdon went from failed prospect/AHL goon to serviceable third-pairing defenseman this past year. You think the fact that he spent 2/3 of his ice time with Matt Carle might have helped with that a bit?

    None of which is to say that I would overpay for Carle, but that’s more because of the Flyers’ cap situation than Carle himself. I wouldn’t give him any more than what Wideman got, but I would do what I can to bring him back without totally breaking the bank.

    • girouxsmonsterrod - Jun 28, 2012 at 9:11 AM

      Game. Set. Match.

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