A Bold Prediction By Sportsnet's Prognosticator!

David McLeod
October 11, 2022  (0:11)

When Sportsnet released their «One bold prediction for every NHL team heading into 2022-23» I immediately knew what the Flyers «bold prediction» would be. Sportsnet did not fail the Flyers faithful either, as their self-proclaimed bold prediction seemed less like a prediction and more like an inevitability.


The only potential saving grace for Chuck Fletcher may be his hiring of John Tortorella, who may breathe new life into the Flyers and bide Fletcher more time. Tortorella's coaching style seems to have a shelf life with players however, who may not respond to his coaching style after its initial impact wears off. Once the Tortorella affect dissipates, the spotlight will shine brightly back on Chuck Fletcher and the team he has built. It is difficult to understand the organizations love affair with Fletcher, when the NHL community and those who cover it, widely agree the Flyers appear to be in disarray and the team spiraling downwards.
When Chuck Fletcher was hired in December of 2018 the Flyers were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs that year. They then missed the playoffs in 2019, won one round in 2020, and missed the playoffs in both 2021 and 2022. Since the Flyers Stanley Cup Finals appearance in 2010, the Philadelphia Flyers have only won 3 playoff rounds, two of those coming in the two years following the Cup loss. That is a complete decade – 10 long years, with one series playoff win and six years of not qualifying for the postseason. Despite the decade of mediocrity, Fletcher's vision was an «aggressive rebuild» and not a complete roster overhaul; keeping only key young talent, like Carter Hart, Ivan Provorov, Travis Konecny, and Joel Farabee.
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Chuck Fletcher's vision has seen him sign the NHL's worst active plus/minus defenseman (-172 for his career), Rasmus Ristolainen, who cost the Flyers the 14th overall draft pick in 2021. He brought in a highly ineffective Keith Yandle, who went -47 on the season and QB'd the NHL's worst power play. Traded Jakub Voracek, who is a .76ppg player, for Cam Atkinson .64ppg. Atkinson is a shoot first mentality, which the Flyers lack, so that trade was understandable and it's hard not to like Atkinson. Fletcher let go the inspirational Oskar Lindblom, who is currently skating with Kevin LaBanc and Logan Couture on the San Jose Sharks second line. He signed 31-year-old, Nicolas Deslauriers to a questionable 4-year deal at $1.75 million – a $750 000 raise for a forth line energy player. Fletcher also signed the oft injured Kevin Hayes and Sean Couturier to seven and eight year deals, respectively.

Another decision Chuck Fletcher made; he drafted Cam York one pick prior to Cole Caufield. Caufiled is the pure shooter type the Flyers haven't had in their lineup since Jeff Carter and Simone Gagne. While the verdict is still early on Cam York, the decision to pass on a high energy, pure goal scorer may be one of the biggest blunders Fletcher made. Caufield scored 22 goals in a 37 game span last year and could threaten the 40 goal mark, while York got demoted in favor of Nick Seeler, Ronnie Attard, and Egor Zamula.
Needless to say, Chuck Fletcher potentially being fired isn't really a «bold prediction» is it?
11 OCTOBRE   |   215 ANSWERS
A Bold Prediction By Sportsnet's Prognosticator!

Who Will Be The First GM Fired In The NHL This Year?

Kevin Cheveldayoff - Jets2813 %
Kelly McCrimmon - Golden Knights2612.1 %
Chuck Fletcher - Flyers14868.8 %
Brian MacLellan - Capitals136 %
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