A recent article published by ESPN trashing Philadelphia Flyers GM Paul Holmgren shows that the sports network continues to lack forethought and knowledge in the world of hockey. The 103-word piece on Holmgren attempts to detail his shortcomings as general manager, despite failing miserably.
The author notes that Holmgren “cut loose” Mike Richards and Jeff Carter, who went onto help the Los Angeles Kings win the 2012 Stanley Cup. Carter was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for Jakub Voracek and two draft picks — Sean Couturier and Nick Cousins. Voracek is coming off a breakout season, notching 46 points in 48 games, while Couturier plagues the rival Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Richards trade brought Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds to Philadelphia. Simmonds is emerging as a strong forward, while Schenn continues to improve his game with each passing season. It is also likely that the signing of Schenn facilitated the acquisition of his defenseman brother Luke Schenn.
Holmgren then “let Jaromir Jagr sign elsewhere.” Jagr signed a one-year contract worth $4.55 million with the Dallas Stars, an outrageous price for an aging superstar. While Jagr aided Claude Giroux immensely during his stint with the Flyers, he simply could not be afforded.
The most insulting part of the article is saved for the end. The author claims that Holmgren attempted to fix the Ilya Bryzgalov fiasco by bringing back a goalie that “didn’t work out the first time with the team (Ray Emery).” Emery didn’t work out with the team because he developed avascular necrosis in his hip, a debilitating disease that disintegrates bone and tissue. The disease nearly ended Emerys NHL career. Furthermore, Emery posted an incredible 17-1 record with the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks last season. He’s established himself as a capable and winning goaltender.
Holmgren has not been perfect, as Flyers fans know. He has made mistakes, namely trading Vezina winner Sergei Bobvrosky to the Blue Jackets. But he continues to make positive, unpredictable acquisitions in an attempt to lead the Flyers to a Stanley Cup victory.
No one trashes our GM except us — Flyers fans.