- Steven Stamkos
- Henrik Sedin
- Pavel Datsyuk
- Sidney Crosby
- Jonathan Towes
- Henrik Zetterberg
- Niklas Backstrom
- Claude Giroux
- Ryan Getzlaf
- Anze Kopitar
- Evgeni Malkin
- Brad Richards
- Ryan Kesler
- Jeff Carter
- Eric Staal
- Mike Richards
- Mikko Koivu
- John Tavares
- Matt Duchene
- Logan Couture
- Corey Perry
- Jeff Skinner
- Patrick Kane
- Danny Heatley
- Alexander Semin
- Jarome Iginla
- Marian Gaborik
- Steve Downie
- Phil Kessel
- Joe Paveleski
- Jaromir Jagr
- Marian Hossa
- Martin Havlat
- Loui Eriksson
- Teemu Selanne
- Alexander Burrows
- Ryan Callahan
- Justin Williams
- Chris Stewart
- Dustin Brown
- Daniel Sedin
- Alexander Ovechkin
- Martin St. Louis
- Zach Parise
- Bobby Ryan
- Rick Nash
- Thomas Vanek
- Partick Marleau
- Michael Cammalleri
- Milan Lucic
- Ilya Kovalchuk
- Ryane Clowe
- Jamie Benn
- James Van Riemsdyk
- Scott Hartnell
- Brandon Dubinsky
- Alex Tanguay
- Taylor Hall
- Brendon Morrow
- James Neal
- Keith Yandle
- Zdeno Chara
- Kris Letang
- Nicklas Lidstrom
- PK Subban
- Christian Ehrhoff
- Mike Green
- Lubomir Visnovsky
- Dan Boyle
- Drew Doughty
- Dustin Byfuglien
- Chris Pronger
- Duncan Keith
- Dion Phaneuf
- Alex Goligoski
- Alexander Edler
- Jack Johnson
- Shea Weber
- Tobias Enstrom
- Ryan Sutter
- Pekka Rinne
- Tim Thomas
- Ryan Miller
- Ilya Bryzgalov
- Henrik Lundqvist
- Carey Price
- Jonathan Quick
- Robert Luongo
- Antti Niemi
- Marc Andre Fleury
- Jimmy Howard
- Corey Crawford
- Miikka Kiprusoff
- Tomas Vokoun
- Semyon Varlamov
- Cam Ward
- Jonas Hiller
- Martin Brodeur
- James Reimer
- Jaroslav Halak
To view all the shots from the day please visit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cillbassidy/sets/
The Absolute Zeros
© The 13ths 2011
The LA Kings have reportedly sent CEO Tim Leiweke, GM Dean Lombardi, the team’s president and coaches to personally offer Brad Ricahrds an offer. If the Kings manage to land Richards and sign Drew Doughty, consider them the best team in the league.
Signing both player however is a BIG question mark.
In other news, why aren’t The Flyers pursuing Doughty?
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UPDATE 6/30/11 @ 5:39 PM ET
The Flyers offically will not be sending an offer sheet to Steven Stamkos:
“We’re not going to do anything on it,” said general manager Paul Holmgren after three days of internal debate with the Flyers’ organization. “We explored it and decided it’s not the way for us to go at this time.
“We’re excited about the additions we made and the direction we’re going right now. We’ll explore things tomorrow [when free agency begins] but a restricted free agency offer sheet is not the way we will go.”
For the past four days or so, the newspapers, message boards, social media sites and water cooler discussions in Philadelphia have revolved around two things, Cliff Lee’s dominant month of June and Steven Stamkos joining The Flyers.
While everyone is in agreement with the first issue, nearly everyone seems to be torn on the second. The 13ths will take a look inside the Steven Stamkos rumors and cut through the bullshit to bring you the truth.
Will The Flyers Make an Offer?
Yes. The Flyers will most likely make Steven Stamkos and offer, just too see what happens. It has been reported that The Flyers are close to offering the superstar center a 12 year, $115 million dollar contract. That’s a yearly cap hit of 9.5 million dollars a year…
If the Flyers were to offer this deal to Stamkos, they would have to give up four 1st round picks and most likely depart with a couple of their veteran players, Ville, Scotty, who knows? Considering Stamkos is in the top 5 best forwards in the league (I put him at #3) many people consider this to be a move that will guarantee a cup in Philadelphia. On the other hand, giving up four 1st round picks and two veteran players is just too much for some fans who think we would be overpaying for his services.
Will Stamkos Accept a Flyer’s Offer?
It doesn’t really matter if Stamkos accepts the offer or not, because he is a restricted free agent, which means the Lightning can match any offer, by any team, and sign him. Lightning manager Steve Yzerman has clearly stated that the Lightning will match any offer put on the table, and I don’t think he is bluffing. Many people have been discussing the financial troubles in Tampa Bay and how the organization lost $30 mil last year as a reason The Flyers could sign Stamkos but I believe the organization would lose a whole lot more money, before they would risk losing their golden child.
With St. Louis, Lecavalier, and Hedman leading the charge down south, Tamp Bay still has a monster of a team and losing Stamkos does not seem to be an option. Even if the Lightning were to receive the 1st round picks, they are in a position to make a run at the cup now and they simply can not afford to wait until those picks develop.
Is There Any Chance Steven Stamkos Will Become a Flyer?
Technically, anything is possible, but The Flyers will most like not be landing Steven Stamkos. Again, since Stamkos is restricted, The Lightning can and will match any offer that comes their way. Also, keep in mind that The Flyers are not the only team looking to sign the phenom… There are many other teams in the hunt, maybe not as vocal, but definitely still in the hunt. As a result, there are a lot more teams, with a lot more salary cap space to work with. So, even if The Flyers did make an offer, it most likely won’t even be the best offer on the table.
Things to Think About
Another thing to keep in mind is the fact that Stamkos wants to remain in Tampa Bay. Stamkos has stated multiple times how much he wants to stay in the city and there have been many reports discussing the strong relationship Stamkos has with his team, particularly Martin St. Louis. While I don’t think Stamkos loves Tampa Bay so much that he would accept a significantly lesser pay day to remain in the city, I can’t see The Lightning organization putting him in the kind of situation where he would have to choose.
At the end of the day, the most likely scenario is that Stamkos will be offered a contract by The Flyers, and that offer that will be quickly matched by The Lightning. Further, we can’t count out a desperate team coming out of nowhere to offer Stamkos the largest contract available, $12 mil a year in the hopes of pushing The Lightning into a check mate. Regardless, the battle between Stamkos and Flyers seems to be one that can not be won. It was a valiant effort and a fun thing to think about, but at the end of the day, it just doesn’t seem possible.
Then again, Steve Yzerman could completely shit the bed and make the biggest blunder in franchise history…
Tomorrow, (some) Flyers Fans will be praying for shit.
The hockey world was shook to its core last week after The Philadelphia Flyers announced they had traded both Jeff Carter and Mike Richards.
It had long been rumored that The Flyers were looking to move a player like Carter, in the hopes of clearing up salary cap space, but the trading of Mike Richards to the Los Angeles Kings took practically everyone by surprise.
Going into the 2011 season, the team has a completely different look… The Flyers are younger and slightly bigger, but are they better? Granted, it was good for The Flyers to regain some of the draft picks they had so desperately needed, and it’s not like the team is getting nothing in return, but at the cost of losing their two biggest franchise forwards, was it worth it?
The 13ths will take an in-depth look at both trades and break down everything you need to know.
Jeff Carter for Jakub Voráček, a 1st round pick (8th overall) in 2011 Entry Draft and a 3rd round pick in 2011 Entry Draft
As stated previously, the trading of Jeff Carter had been tossed around in nearly every trade conversation held in Philadelphia and while still surprising, the move was not unexpected.
What The Flyers are Losing:
With the trading of Carter, The Flyers are losing their purest goal scorer. Having led the team in scoring multiple years, The Flyers will now rely heavily on younger players to fill the gap now left in Carter’s absence. Jeff Carter has scored 36, 33 and 46 goals respectively, in each of the last three seasons, so filling this void will be a task easier said than done.
In the upcoming season, The Flyers will rely heavily on JVR to continue his breakout performance of 2010 in the hopes that the 2nd overall pick in 2007 will provide some much need scoring prowess in front of the net. Of course, pure goal scorers like Danny Briere will be expected to lead this goal scoring charge, but The Flyers can not expect Danny Briere to get it done alone.
Along with being the teams leading goals scorer in 2010, Jeff Carter was arguably the team’s best face-off winner. With 54.7 faceoff win percentage, Carter was third on the team only to Ville Leino (57.4%) and Andreas Nodl (57.9%) in this category. However, when you take into consideration that both Nodl and Leino, take only the occasional face-off draw, Carter has to be at the top of the list as the Flyer’s best face-off man.
At only 19 years old, it is uncertain whether newly acquired Brayden Schenn is NHL ready, but the young center should be able to provide some support in the face-off circle as soon as he begins wearing the orange and black full-time. In the meantime, The Flyers will look to their hybrid, center/winger players, such as Claude Giroux (50.0%) and Danny Briere (48.2%) to continue winning draws.
What The Flyers are Gaining:
Jakub Voráček was taken 7th overall in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft by the Columbus Blue Jackets and like any top ten pick, high expectations came along with the right wingers signing. In looking at what Voráček brings to The Flyers, the first thing many people notice is that his career season high for goals is only 16, a number he put up back in 2009. It’s obvious that the 205 lb right-winger doesn’t have the natural scoring touch that Carter provided in Philadelphia but the young Czech has the potential to put up big numbers.
So going forward into 2011, if Voráček is not expected to put up 40 goals a season, he will be expected to put shots on net, create scoring chances and set up his centers in front of the net.
Voráček has great play making ability and while we can still reasonably expect 20 goals a season, the 21-year-old’s true numbers will come in the form of assists. Like James Van Riemsdyk, who was taken in the same draft, Jakub Voráček is still very young and with a lot of untapped potential. If both of these players can truly breakout this season, the results will be scary.
Over the past few years, draft picks have been the one thing The Flyers have been running low on. With all the trades and acquisitions in the last few seasons, the team has dealt away their building blocks of the future; building blocks that can not be undervalued. Luckily, for The Flyers, the team has regained some important picks that will hopefully pay dividends in the future.
With the trading of Jeff Carter, the team has obtained two 2011 Entry Draft picks. To be exact, the picks are a 3rd round pick and a 1st round pick, 8th overall in this years entry draft. While a 3rd round pick is nothing to bat an eye at, the 1st rounder is the big kicker in the trade.
Now I’m being optimistic here, but could you imagine if The Flyers 8th overall pick (Sean Couturier) turned out to be anything like the Carolina Hurricane’s rookie sensation Jeff Skinner? Skinner was taken 7th overall in last year’s draft and the young winger not only managed to make the team’s opening night’s roster, he went on to become one of the team’s most dangerous scorers.
The 19-year-old put up an amazing 31 goals and 32 assists, while playing in all 82 games last season, earning him the Calder Trophy, the NHL’s award for best rookie… Granted, Skinner’s season was freakish, but the point is that with any top ten pick, there is always that explosive potential lurking right around the corner.
In looking at the Jeff Carter trade as a whole, I believe it to be an excellent trade. There is no doubt that Jeff Carter was a great goal scorer and a huge asset to our team but in looking at the bigger picture, it was a move that had to be made. Along with gaining Voráček and the draft picks, The Flyers also gained the ability to sign their much sought after goaltender, Ilya Bryzgalov.
So let’s recap…The Flyers cleared cap space, which allowed them to sign their #1 goaltender, they obtained their much-needed draft picks and they picked up a great play-maker in Jakub Voráček… As far as trades go, what else could you ask for?
Mike Richards for Brayden Schenn, Wayne Simmonds and a 2nd round pick in 2012 Entry Draft
Just a couple of months ago, The 13ths posted an article titled “‘C’ Ya Later.” In response to The Flyers 2010 playoff collapse, the article focused on Mike Richard’s leadership in the locker room and whether or not Richie was the right person to be wearing the ‘C’.
In the article, we tossed around various scenarios that saw Mike giving up his captaincy to make room for new leadership and one scenario which had Mike Richards being traded. To be honest, while I did write that it was a possibility Richards could be traded, I never expected it to really happen.
What The Flyers are Losing:
Hard work, Grit, Determination
Mike Richards epitomized the blue-collar, hardworking, gritty hockey player. Shift after shift Richards gave it his all and left everything on the ice. During the early years of his career, Richards was portrayed as the next Bobby Clarke, someone who would grind out the wins and lead The Flyers to glory, and for the majority of his career, Richards was just that player.
However, just this past season, Richards’s resolve was brought into question when the media scrutinized the captain, inquiring to whether or not he was still giving the same effort to which we were accustomed. Some people stated that Mike Richards was playing through an injury, some people thought he didn’t care as much after signing a career contract and yet others still believed The Flyers captain was partying too much.
Considering that 66 points is seen as an “off-year” for The Flyers former captain, no matter what the reason, a 66 point off-year, is still pretty good if you ask me.
Perhaps the most important aspect of Mike Richards’s game that is all too easy to overlook, is his defense. It’s rare in the NHL for a player to put up the kind of numbers Mike Richards did while still remaining defensively responsible, but game after game, Richards was able to get back when needed and he prevented more than his fair share of scoring opportunities.
Whenever a forward can provide defensive support, it takes a lot of pressure of the guys in the back, so the biggest losers in this trade could be our own defensemen. Whether or not someone will be able to step up into Mike Richard’s role as a true two-way player remains to be seen, but the Flyers are not wholly without defensive forwards. Claude Giroux immediately comes to mind when I think of The Flyers current, best two-way forward, but the defensive shoes Richards has left to fill are huge.
You could argue that Mike Richards is the most dangerous player in the entire NHL when down a man. Richards was always a threat on the penalty kill and it shows in his career numbers. Who can forget the all the short-handed goals (23 over 6 seasons) Mike Richards has racked up as a Flyer over the years?
In fact, back in 2009 in a game against The New York Rangers, Mike Richards broke the NHL record for most 5-on-3 goals, with a total of three in his career. Those are some pretty impressive shorthanded numbers, especially when you consider Richards is only 26 years old…
What The Flyers are Gaining:
Six foot 196 lb center, Brayden Schenn, was chosen 5th overall by the Los Angeles Kings in the 2009 Entry Draft. Long touted as one of the best prospects in the entire King’s organization, there are extremely high expectations for the young Canadian. So much so that when the deal between The Flyers and Kings was initially announced, it was Los Angeles fans, not Philly fans, who felt they got the short end of the stick on the trade. Many fans felt as though Schenn’s rise to superstardom was right around the corner and that it was just a matter of time before he led the Kings to The Stanley Cup.
Regardless, it seems like every year there are always a few prospects that are expected to be the next big thing… I myself am guilty of probably buying into this hype and at times, even creating it, (see Sean Couturier post above) but who can blame fans like me? A top ten pick always has a ton potential; it just turns out that more than not, that potential is not always reached. Need I remind people of players like Nikolai Zherdev, 4th overall in 2003, Scotty Upshall, 6th overall in 2002, Rick DiPietro, 1st overall in 2000 or how about Alexander Svitov, 3rd overall in 2001… Alexander who? Exactly.
Now, please don’t take this as an attack on Brayden Schenn, it is not. I think Brayden will have a strong career, I think he will be a huge benefit to The Flyers in the future and I honestly do not believe Schenn will be a bust. My point however is that you already had a sure thing in Mike Richards at a relatively low price.
A question for the fans would be this, “if Brayden Schenn puts up the kind of production Mike Richards did, would you consider him a success?” I would answer yes, which then begs the question, “why make the trade in the first place?” If you make the trade because you also get Wayne Simmonds and a 3rd rounder, well, I guess it makes sense. I guess I just really liked Mike Richards…
In a total of 240 NHL games, Wayne Simmonds has put up 39 goals and 54 assists for 93 career points. Obviously those numbers indicate Simmonds is not a natural goal scorer, but what he does provide is 3rd or 4th line depth with the potential to rise to a 2nd line position. That’s not too bad for a player who has been seen as more an afterthought in a deal that brought Brayden Schenn to Philadelphia…
A lot of people (including Paul Holmgren) think that Simmonds has a lot of untapped potential and those people may be right. The hard thing is figuring out what people’s definition of “potential” is. If you see potential as scoring 40+ goals, well, that’s a pretty big stretch that will probably never come to fruition. However, if you see potential as adding 10 points to his career season high total of 40, well I think that’s definitely a possibility.
My personal take? I think Wayne Simmonds will become the player The Flyers hoped Kris Versteeg would be. While Simmonds will never be a “superstar” per say, he will be a hardworking, gritty player who will fit in well in Philadelphia. I believe Simmonds can become a consistent 40-50 point player, who will provide additional depth to an already strong Flyers squad. For a player who has been seen as more of a “throw-in” on the trade, I’ll take that kind of production any day.
2nd Round Pick
As stated previously, The Flyers need draft picks bad and their 2012 2nd round pick should not be undervalued. It’s hard to predict just what to expect from a 2nd round pick, but the potential is there. We’ll just have to wait until 2012 to see who this pick will be and probably another 2-3 years to see how good this player will become.
The Flyers trade of Mike Richards has more question marks when compared to the Jeff Carter trade. The move could honestly could go either way. If Schenn develops into the superstar that everyone has predicted, well, this trade would obviously be worth it. However, if Schenn simply falls into the very popular, 30-40 point production class, the trade would have been too much. Granted Wayne Simmonds also has potential at right-wing and the 2nd round pick could turn out to be big for The Flyers, but The Flyers paid a large price for these “what ifs.”
Getting rid of Mike Richards was a huge gamble and only time will tell if that gamble will pay off. Whenever you take that big of a risk, the odds of winning are high but the odds of losing are just as large. As a result, the move will most likely be seen as either one of the best or worst in Flyer’s history. Only time will tell…
Farwell Mike Richards
In ending this article, I would like to tip my hat to a true Philadelphia Flyer, Mike Richards.
In my lifetime as not only a Flyers fan, but a hockey fan, I don’t know if any one single play was ever as exciting as the one below, nor do I know if any one single play could truly encapsulate what a player was all about. But, if there was one such play that existed, it would be this one:
So long Mike…