FLYERS ARE TOAST! WHERE’S THE PHONY OUTRAGE IN LAME-ASS MEDIA SIMILAR TO WHAT THE SIXERS HAVE ENDURED?
With little salary cap space, new Flyers general manager Ron Hextall had his hands mostly tied when the free agency period opened, so there hasn't been a lot of Flyers news, Flyers rumors or Flyers blogs this summer.
To be fair, they re-signed back-up goalie Ray Emery on July 1 and added veteran defenseman Nick Schultz, who was traded from Edmonton to Columbus last year at the trade deadline and re-upped forward Brayden Schenn.
And in other Flyers news, Flyers blogs and Flyers rumors that turned out to be true, before July 1, they also traded Scott Hartnell to the Blue Jackets for R.J. Umberger and re-signed 39-year-old defenseman Kimmo Timonen.
For now and at least this season, the Flyers and coach Craig Berube need to figure out how to keep winning with a lumbering defense that is led by the aging Timonen. Braydon Coburn, Luke Schenn and Nick Grossmann are all scheduled to be free agents after the 2015-2016 season, which is when the prospects will no doubt either be knocking on the door for a starting job or already have one.
The good Flyers news is the core of the team, which includes most of their young forwards, ranges from 21 years old (Sean Couturier) to 26 (captain Claude Giroux, who was a finalist for MVP). In three years those players will be in their prime and if the young defensemen develop as hoped and are surrounded by key veterans on the blue line, the Flyers may inch up into the Cup contender category.
The one area that is secure, ironically, is in goal and that's no Flyers rumor.
For the first time since their current GM manned the pipes more than 20 years ago, they are set in net with Steve Mason. The 26-year-old netminder emerged as a bona fide No. 1 last winter and nearly stole their first-round series against the Rangers, inspiring thousands of Flyers blogs to declare him the second coming of Bernie Parent.
Anchored by Mason, led by a deep offense that returns six 20-goal scorers and an average defense which is supported by the forwards under Berube's team-defensive system, it's hard not to fathom them battling the Rangers, Capitals, Devils and Blue Jackets for a playoff berth.