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11-18-2005, 07:09 AM
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If the Flyers really felt they needed Luongo, I would offer Gagne and Esche and ask for another contributing player in return, preferably somebody on the younger (read: cheaper) side. They have to make the salaries match. They can offer young players for Luongo, but how do they fit everyone under the cap? With a shoehorn? They need to move money the other way, and make no mistake - Gagne will get paid cash money next year. His value has never been higher, and it's most certainly higher than he's really worth. Playing with Forsberg has a way of doing that to people - just ask Milan Hejduk (okay, so he's had the knee issue, but don't overlook the point).

I know this sounds radical, and probably something more appropriate for the off-season and when Gagne had more value - namely, another year on his $2M-odd contract. However, it's not much different than the radical star-for-star trade of this past off-season (Hossa for Heatley).

Personally, I think the most unobtainable player on the Flyer roster (from the front office's point of view) is Pitkanen. The guy is just in his second year and he's out-logged Johnsson in ice time in many games. Granted, Kim's had an injury (a groin, g-g-g-groin injury I believe - that sounds funny if you've ever seen Sam Malone rap about it), but it's the position in the organization most devoid of true NHL talent and Pitkanen is as true of an NHL talent as there is out there.

At the end of the day, I don't think the Flyers need to do anything with the goaltending. Remember this when replying to anything I wrote above. They came within a game of going to the finals, and it wasn't as if they did it in spite of Esche. When complaints arise in the fan base about Esche and Primeau (as goalie and captain, respectively), I can only wonder what team people were watching a few years ago when each area was a literal unreliable mess. Consider that the grass might not be so green over there.

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