Well, it wasn’t the fireworks that I expected from the Flyers on day 1 of free agency but it wasn’t a bad day either. In true Philadelphia Flyers fashion, they brought back a former player and that would be Ray Emery. Steve Mason fans might want to get use to seeing Mason back on the bench. Maybe, not right away but he will be. Emery is a very solid goalie. He was good here the first time until he got injured (was thought to be career ending).
In 21 games for the Blackhawks, he was 17-1 with a 1.94 goals-against average and .922 save percentage. He might have been the goalie to lead the Blackhawks to the Cup, if he didn’t have groin injury near the end of the season. Crawford took over and never looked back.
Emery’s deal is worth $1.65 million (1 year), while Mason’s one-year extension cost $1.5 million. Considering that the Flyers got a .900 save percentage last year out of Bryz at a $5.6 million, looks like they got better value with Mason and Emery combined at $3.15 million. I say better value, not better production. The reasoning? Mason and Emery have yet to play in front of this defense. Streit (newly signed) is a nice offensive player but he is just an average defensive-defenseman.
The Flyers also signed goalie Yann Danis to a two-way contract. Danis will play in the AHL for the Adirondack Phantoms. He can also be a serviceable NHL backup in case of injury to Emery or Mason. That is what scouts say. I have never seen Danis play.
The next move?
There are reports that the Flyers have a contract in place to bring back Simon Gagne but they need to clear out salary cap space. The Flyers have $68.1 million against the cap as of right now. The NHL cap is set at $64.3 million. They can go 10% over the cap as I said in a previous post, according to CapGeek.com. But they’re $1 million over that as well.
So gets traded? I say it will be Meszaros ($4 mill), Coburn ($ 4.5 mill) or Grossmann ($ 3.5 mill) to get back under the cap. Unless, they the Flyers have something else up their sleeves, no more Bobby Ryan though.