Says the Last Word on Hockey:

For all the good the Flyers have done, there is also quite a bit of bad moves that have been made thus far.

To start, the Kevin Hayes trade may have been a solid move, but the subsequent extension is questionable. The Flyers gave Hayes a 7-year contract with an average annual value of $7,142,857. This makes him the 20th highest-paid center in the league.

According to Evolving Hockey’s RAPM (Regularized Adjusted Plus-Minus) model, Hayes was the 28th best center in the NHL last year. At 27 years old, Hayes is unlikely to get any better and overpaying a player for 7 years is rarely an advisable move.

Another puzzling move was when the Flyers swapped Radko Gudas and Matt Niskanen with the Washington Capitals. Gudas has a bad reputation with fans for his, at times, questionable physical play, but is actually a solid contributor on the blue line. The Czech defender chipped in 20 points in 77 games. He is a better than average defender and injects grit into any lineup. At a cap hit of just $2,345,000 Gudas provides value. Niskanen, on the other hand, is no such value. The defender scored more points than Gudas last year, tallying 25 points, but did so on a $5,750,000 salary cap hit. Niskanen used to be good for around 35 points a year, but those days seem to be long over as the defender enters his mid 30’s. There’s no metric that indicates Niskanen is superior to Gudas, let alone twice as good.

Philadelphia Flyers Offseason a Mixed Bag