AP Photo/Matt Slocum
The Philadelphia Flyers promoted Paul Holmgren to President and Ron Hextall to General Manager.
In his new position, Homgren will oversee the business and hockey operations end of things and Hextall will be responsible for the day-to-day stuff.
Holmgren has played and coached for the Flyers. He also spent four years with the Hartford Whalers. He has worked his way up in the organization from a scout to now being the President of the team.
Holmgren took over as the General Manager in the 2006-07 season. He led the Flyers to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2010, but has given up too easily on young stars and signed players to ridiculous contracts. One good deal Holmgren made was acquiring defenseman Chris Pronger from the Anaheim Ducks at the 2009 draft. Pronger was a big part of the Flyers making the Finals in 2010. In the 2011-12 season, he got hit in the eye with a stick and hasn’t played since because of post-concussion syndrome.
Holmgren traded young stars Mike Richards and Jeff Carter in separate deals in 2011, just one year after going to the Stanley Cup Finals. Holmgren then acquired goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov and signed him to a nine-year, $51 million contract. Only two years after signing that big contract, the Flyers bought Bryzgalov out because he didn’t play well while with the team.
In the summer of 2012, Holmgren traded young goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Bobrovsky went on to win the Vezina Trophy as the best goalie the next season. James Van Riemsdyk was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs for defenseman Luke Schenn. Van Riemsdyk had 30 goals this season for the Maple Leafs, who missed the playoffs.
Holmgren did acquire goalie Steve Mason from the Blue Jackets. He has played well since coming over and the Flyers finally look like they have a number one goaltender.
Ron Hextall spent three years as a pro scout and four years as the Director of Pro Player Personnel for the Flyers. In 2006, he joined the Los Angeles Kings organization. Hextall spent seven years with the Kings before coming back over to the Flyers last season as the Assistant General Manager.
He was the Assistant General Manager and Director of Hockey Operations for the Kings when they won the Stanley Cup in 2012. Hextall was also the General Manager of the Kings American Hockey League Affiliate, the Manchester Monarchs, who went to the playoffs six of seven years under his watch.
The Flyers needed to make a move to keep Hextall in the organization because there are other General Manager positions open around the league. Hopefully, Hextall will have more patience with the development of his young players than Holmgren did, and not trade them for older average veteran players.
Hextall has some work to do in the offseason. The Flyers need a shutdown defenseman and a top six left winger that can put the puck in the net.
Hopefully owner Ed Snider, and Holmgren will let Hextall be the General Manager and not interfere with his decisions to try and make the Flyers a better team.