Flyers

Flyers weekly observations: New GM, Dave Hakstol's fate, more

Flyers

It was a quiet week for the Flyers.

Just kidding, that week felt like a month and the games became a subplot to the drama.

Here are some observations from the madness:

• Despite the 4-2 win Saturday over the Penguins, the Flyers' entire picture still depicts a mess.

Think about it: The Flyers don't have a general manager, they don't have an assistant general manager/director of player personnel, they're down an assistant coach, the head coach's future is as stable as the situation in net, they're on goalie No. 5 and they're 27th in the NHL with 24 points.

If the Flyers can do something with this season, they'll have certainly earned it.

• Guys like Bill Zito and Steve Greeley really intrigue me. They have versatile backgrounds and there's something to that up-and-coming appeal.

Remember, though, those bold and unconventional routes look great at first because they're different, but they don't always pan out. The Flyers took that avenue with Dave Hakstol, going with a younger college coach that had no NHL experience, and it has yet to reward them, while the GM who made the hire is gone.

Zito and Greeley wouldn't be crazy hires, but they haven't run the show yet.

That's why I think the Flyers will go with an experienced name, a candidate that has been there, done that with working the trade and free-agent markets. Paul Holmgren and Dave Scott sounded like they both wanted a GM that will know exactly what to do the second the job is accepted.

 

There's less patience in this instance and more desire for results.

• Don't be surprised if Hakstol lasts the entire season — and that's not terrible, either.

The new GM will have a ton of priorities when the job starts. And to truly find his head coach, it will take time, whereas other tasks will bring greater immediate importance.

What does firing Hakstol from the jump accomplish? It's hard to bring in a completely new head coach during the middle of a season. The landscape of candidates could also be clearer and better at the end of the season.

Meanwhile, the interim route doesn't look great. Maybe Scott Gordon from AHL affiliate Lehigh Valley? Still, the new GM might not know Gordon yet and that would be a difficult shake-up for the Phantoms, as well.

Hakstol will have plenty of positive recommendations when the new GM begins, which will only help his case to finish off the season.

• There seemed to be a lot of anger over Jakub Voracek's "scared" comment following Tuesday's 4-3 loss to the Senators.

Were the Flyers really scared when the Senators trimmed a two-goal deficit to 3-2 in the final 10 minutes of regulation? Probably not, but what Voracek meant was the Flyers started thinking the worst instead of playing with confidence and force to finish the game.

It's definitely not good if a team with a veteran core is trying not to lose when the opposition threatens a late lead.

But that's where the Flyers' mental state is with all that has gone on in these first two months. They can shake that, though. They did in Pittsburgh. And a timely save here and there doesn't hurt.

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