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Report: Flyers want goalie with ‘no or one-year left’ on deal

Jun 29, 2013, 5:17 PM EDT

Jaroslav Halak Getty Images

When Flyers GM Paul Holmgren was searching for a goaltender in the summer of 2011, he signed Ilya Bryzgalov to a massive nine-year, $51 million contract. That didn’t work out and it sounds like they aren’t interested in repeating history.

Holmgren is looking to acquire a goaltender once again, but this time he wants one with “no or one-year left” so he can “get a read on that player before committing,” according to a CSN Philly source.

Finding a capable starting goaltender that will become a free agent in the summer of 2014 isn’t impossible, but certainly his options are limited. St. Louis’ Jaroslav Halak would fit that description and he’s already been linked to Philadelphia.

Buffalo’s Ryan Miller is the other noteworthy possibility and the Sabres are gauging the trade market for him. However, he comes with a $6,250,000 annual cap hit, which would be hard for the Flyers to handle unless Buffalo retains some of it.

An alternative is Evgeni Nabokov, who is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent. At the age of 37, Nabokov will probably only be looking for a one or two-year deal.

It’s worth noting that this might not be entirely about just avoiding going through a situation similar to the one they had with Bryzgalov. Steve Mason was great in his short stint with the Philadelphia Flyers, but he was also coming off years of struggles with the Blue Jackets.

Philadelphia might not be comfortable having him serve as the team’s starter in 2013-14 given his history, but if he has another strong season, they might want the flexibility to use him as their undisputed number one in 2014-15.

  1. icelovinbrotha215 - Jun 29, 2013 at 5:47 PM

    Well it shows that they don’t want to be locked in to a mortgage like contract. You still have no long-term plan though…

    • wreckemrinaldo21 - Jun 29, 2013 at 5:58 PM

      As of now Mason and Stolarz are the long term plan. Can not discredit Mason’s play down the stretch. People are on the Brobovsky band wagon, but Mason had similar numbers on a worse team. Personally I think the flyers are going to experience the second coming of Ray Emery.

    • hockeyfan28 - Jun 29, 2013 at 10:52 PM

      Anthony Stolarz is the long term plan he won’t be ready for a few more years but he’s the heavy favorite to be the team USA goalie at the World Championships in Dec boy can play

  2. ciarram84 - Jun 29, 2013 at 5:55 PM

    can not wait til tomm should be a very exciting day.

  3. phillyphanatic77 - Jun 29, 2013 at 6:05 PM

    Wouldn’t it be crazy if, unable to reach an agreement, the Blue Jackets send Bobrovsky’s rights back to Philadelphia? It’s highly unlikely but all reports indicate that no progress has been made between the two sides, and instead of simply losing a young, up-and-coming goalie to the KHL, maybe they get something for his rights. Just a pipedream.

    I’d be very happy with Halak though. I’m hoping something happens tonight.

    • iHeartHockey31 - Jun 29, 2013 at 8:20 PM

      The reason Bob started playing well in Columbus is because their goalie coach recognized a problem with Bob’s stance [he wasn’t sitting up high enough in his butterfly — which caused other issues like not having his glove positioned correctly.] He then worked with Bob [during the summer, prior to the lockout] & all year long to correct his stance and tweak his game]. In the 2 years that Bob played for Philadelphia, Jeff Reese either never noticed this problem or wasn’t able to communicate instructions clearly effectively enough to improves Bob’s game. Unless Philadelphia intends to find a new goalie coach, it’s unlikely that [1] Bob would want to come here or [2] that he’d continue to be successful under Jeff Reese.

      Mason didn’t just play well in his last few games, his career stats vs Eastern Conference teams are REALLY good [.923]. [You know those teams we play 54 games against & the first 3 playoff rounds]. His biggest problem was being stuck on a Western Conference team when he’s more suited to playing against teams in the East. [Other issues include having been the goaltender for the worst team in the league & not playing in a city with a large hockey fanbase].

      One of the most notable things about the 7 games he played for Philly, wasn’t even his play, it was the play of the guys in front of him. The team PLAYED better when he was in net. They trusted him behind them & played a better game when they weren’t worried about whether or not their goaltender was going to be ducking out of the way of pucks. Even if Mason doesn’t turn out to be the greatest goaltender, at least the team can get their attention back on the offensive game & go back to winning games like they used to – by scoring more goals then they let in.

      Besides. He’s so pretty to look at :) Steve Mason [& Carey Price] are the hottest looking goalies in the whole league. It’s not like we could possibly have a season worse than last one. At least Mason is waaay prettier to watch in post-game interviews.

  4. nyrnashty - Jun 29, 2013 at 6:33 PM

    The Flyers should just keep Mason for now and select either Tristan Jarry, Eric Comrie or Zach Fucale with the 11th overall pick. Jarry would be a great pick for them. The Flyers need to worry more about their minor league D at this point than anything else. Can’t win with that D, even if they had Lundqvist or Quick in goal.

    • iHeartHockey31 - Jun 29, 2013 at 8:23 PM

      We never had the best D. We always made up for it by scoring more goals than we let in. This season instead of playing offense all 5 skaters had to stand in front of Bryzgalov because he couldn’t be trusted to keep the puck out.

  5. rockyspond - Jun 29, 2013 at 7:54 PM

    If the Oilers get dumb enough to (over)pay for Schneider, Holmgren can have Dubnyk for Cobourn; that would resolve at least part of both teams’ problems. For those of you who haven’t seen Dubnyk play often enough, he has all the tools to be Flyer’s #1 goalie, and has 1 year left at $3.5 before UFA status.

  6. laxman1944 - Jun 29, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Just sit tight……….Be wise tomorrow please……

    Good hunting Paul

  7. chrisk61 - Jun 29, 2013 at 8:13 PM

    worse case is flyers sit tight at #11 and draft a D man. or they trade up, with a deal that includes coburn, but they keep their #11 and then grab 2 D men.

    i don’t think they will be too focused on their 2nd goalie tomorrow.

  8. megahockey - Jun 29, 2013 at 8:31 PM

    Really hoping Mason does well in Philly. Last years second rounder Anthony Stolarz could eventually become a decent starter/excellent backup.

  9. Habib Marwan - Jun 29, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    It really wouldnt hurt to have Ryan Miller for one season

    • Windmiller4 - Jun 29, 2013 at 9:37 PM

      It would hurt their cap space

    • megahockey - Jun 29, 2013 at 11:02 PM

      Totally agree that they need someone for 1-3 years. Just for the future.

  10. LampyB - Jun 29, 2013 at 10:24 PM

    Mason won’t become a #1 and Nabokov is old and will retire at his current level. Nothing stellar. Halak would be a fantastic option the test out for a season, should absolutely try and get this done. Halal had a bad season but was in the midst of a clusterf**k with two other net minders. Wasn’t really given a shot, and in 2011-2012 season he was unstoppable with Elliot

  11. jimw81 - Jun 29, 2013 at 10:58 PM

    Holmgren’s brilliant mind at work people. watch him give a goalie on ufa a ridiculous deal.

    sad part is that he can’t take a joke anymore.

    Some content was stripped by our security filters, but it should be possible for one of your Editors to embed the content for you.

  12. crazemastercraze - Jun 29, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    Either way, Flyers will mess it up worse than Mr. Bungle. It will be hilarious

  13. sizzle299 - Jun 29, 2013 at 11:50 PM

    Another day another PHT article citing csn philly or some other “report” from the Philly media. Please please stop citing these pathetic excuses for hockey reporters. These nutless monkeys just make up a different fake story every day which is essentially a headline and no substance.

    What will they without Bryz to quote instead of actually reporting on hockey??

    PHT stop writing articles if the only source is the media in Philly

  14. phillies816 - Jul 1, 2013 at 8:21 AM

    Can’t wait to watch this team underachieve again in 2014. I’ve never seen a team get such a pass in my life. Haven’t won jack squat since the mid 70s but the brain washed masses still accept it here in Philly. I’m tired of this team living in the 70s. Kate Smith, Bob Clarke, Bernie Parent, Bob Kelly, the “Broad Street Bullies”…want to bring back something from the 70s that really matters? Try the Stanley Cup. PATHETIC

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