It’s very likely that Panthers assistant GM Randy Sexton, who is handling the club’s chores with Bill Torrey, will try to arrange something along the lines of what the Flyers negotiated with Nashville in June 2007: getting the rights to Kimmon Timonen and Scott Hartnell, then signing both before the July 1 free agent period began.
“I like our defense,” Holmgren said. “I think we are on the right path here. Does that mean we won’t try to look at adding a different element? No. I recognize the fact we don’t have a big hammer back there, who makes life uncomfortable for the other team. That’s easier said than done sometimes.”
Holmgren said that goalie Marty Biron is changing agents, but the club remains in the dark as to what Biron wants in terms of money or length of contract, and time is running out; he added that the club still would consider re-signing Antero Niittymaki.
Interestingly, Holmgren said if the team re-signs Scott Munroe, he doesn’t see him backing up Ray Emery. Which sort of opens the door for … Robert Esche “if” he can void the final year of his Russian deal, which the NHL frowns upon unless the Russian club is compensated.
SKA St. Petersburg coach Barry Smith says Esche owes him another year, or any NHL team signing him has to fork over a goalie.
“He played both years [in Russia],” Holmgren said of Esche. “He’s changed. I talked to him for a couple hours last week. I think he is a different guy. Older, more mature. I think his family is a bigger issue in his life now. I think he struggled with things back at the end of his time here.”
Holmgren would like to re-sign Knuble before July 1, but there is no agreement on length of contract as of yet. Same for Andrew Alberts.
Holmgren said he told coach John Stevens to come up with a new offensive scheme that is going to test the Flyers’ energy level.
“I want us to be more aggressive,” Holmgren said he told Stevens. “I talked to John right after the season … The next time we met, I wanted him to come back and show me how we’re going be more aggressive.
The Flyers have the 21st pick in the draft and while Holmgren admitted he would like to trade up, he said he would also consider trading down so he could get multiple picks in the second round.
According to a league source, free-agent defenseman Jay Bouwmeester has a “wish list” of about six NHL teams he would like to sign with and the Flyers are on it. According to the source, Bouwmeester likes the Flyers from an “organizational standpoint” and considers them an “up-and-coming team.”
Word is Montreal won't be offering Francis Bouillon a contract, so he'll be a UFA July 1. He'd be a good fit as the number 5-6 guy assuming they could get him at a reasonable price.
not a bad player, but if we're going to bring in any more defenseman, i would hope it to be a top 2 guy.
also, if it's going to be a 6-7 dman, we should just bring back Gauthier and play him 8 games next season....all against Pittsburgh. hopefully by the 4th loss, he will have knocked either Crosby or Malkin out.