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Thread: Flyers fire GM, Ron Hextall

  1. #1
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    Flyers fire GM, Ron Hextall

    https://www.nhl.com/news/ron-hextall...ia/c-302307698

    by Adam Kimelman @NHLAdamK / NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor



    Ron Hextall was fired as general manager of the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday.

    "The Flyers organization has decided to relieve Ron Hextall of his duties as executive vice president and general manager," president Paul Holmgren said. "We thank Ron for his many significant contributions, but it has become clear that we no longer share the same philosophical approach concerning the direction of the team. In light of these differences, we feel it's in the organization's best interests to make a change, effective immediately. I have already begun a process to identify and select our next general manager, which we hope to complete as soon as possible."

    The Flyers (10-11-2) are seventh in the Metropolitan Division and 1-4-1 in their past six games following a 6-0 loss at the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.

    Philadelphia is allowing 3.57 goals per game, third-most in the NHL after the Ottawa Senators (4.35) and Florida Panthers (3.62). The penalty kill is 30th (69.7 percent), ahead of the Senators (68.5 percent), and the power play is 25th (15.7 percent).

    Flyers captain Claude Giroux said some of the onus for the move falls on the players.

    "Anytime the coach, the GM, gets fired, as players you feel responsible," he said. " We win games that doesn't happen.

    "Hockey's a business, we know that. If you don't do your job properly you're going to be in jeopardy. Players need to do a better job doing our job. Got to make sure that we play better every night, play as a team. We need to enjoy the game. … It's not a secret, we have to be better as a team, win some games and that starts tomorrow."

    The Flyers play the Senators at Wells Fargo Center on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSP, RDS2, TSN5, NHL.TV).

    Hextall, 54, was in his fifth season as GM. He was promoted from assistant GM to replace Holmgren on May 7, 2014.

    The Flyers reached the Stanley Cup Playoffs twice in Hextall's first four seasons but were eliminated in the Eastern Conference First Round in six games each time, against the Pittsburgh Penguins last season and the Washington Capitals in 2016.

    During Hextall's tenure, the Flyers built an impressive prospect pipeline, including eight players at the World Junior Summer Showcase in August, an event that features the best junior-eligible players from the United States, Canada, Finland and Sweden competing for spots in the World Junior Championship. It was the second-most among NHL teams after the Chicago Blackhawks (nine).

    The Flyers started the season with six players drafted under Hextall on the roster, including defenseman Ivan Provorov (No. 7) and forward Travis Konecny (No. 24), selected in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft, and forward Nolan Patrick, chosen with the No. 2 pick in the 2017 NHL Draft.

    Philadelphia also selected goalie Carter Hart, one of the top prospects outside the NHL, in the second round (No. 48) of the 2016 NHL Draft.

    However, goaltending remains an issue with the Flyers. They have played an NHL-high five goalies this season, with four starting at least one game, tied with the Los Angeles Kings for most in the NHL.

    Goalies Brian Elliott and Michal Neuvirth each is out with a lower-body injury. Alex Lyon, who missed the Maple Leafs game because of a lower-body injury, was sent to Lehigh Valley of the American Hockey League on Monday. Calvin Pickard, claimed on waivers from the Maple Leafs on Oct. 2, allowed four goals on six shots against Toronto on Saturday and has a 4.01 goals-against average in 11 games. Anthony Stolarz, who was recalled from Lehigh Valley on Friday when Lyon was injured, allowed two goals on 35 shots in his first NHL game since April 9, 2017.

    In Hextall's five seasons, the Flyers have started nine goalies, third-most in the NHL after the Arizona Coyotes and Buffalo Sabres, each with 11.

    Hextall also made the unconventional hire of Dave Hakstol from the University of North Dakota as coach May 8, 2015. Hakstol is the third person to go from NCAA hockey to the NHL without prior experience as a player or coach in the League.

    "It's a tough morning," Hakstol said. "Tough morning for all of us, certainly for me personally. That being said, Ron brought me here to do a job and I'm going to continue to focus and work at doing that job to the best of my abilities."

    Hextall was selected by the Flyers in the sixth round (No. 119) of the 1982 NHL Draft, and spent 11 of his 13 seasons in Philadelphia. He helped the Flyers to the Stanley Cup Final as a rookie in 1986-87 and won the Conn Smythe Trophy as MVP of the 1987 playoffs despite Philadelphia losing to the Edmonton Oilers in seven games. He also helped the Flyers reach the Final in 1997, starting three of their four straight losses to the Detroit Red Wings.

    He is Philadelphia's all-time leader in games played by a goalie (489) and wins (240).

    After retiring in 1999, Hextall spent seven seasons in Philadelphia's front office as a scout and director of player personnel. He was hired as assistant GM of the Los Angeles Kings in 2006 and helped build the team that won the Stanley Cup in 2012.


    Travis
    2014-2015 Ceeb Pool Champion of the World
    2016-2017 Ceeb Pool Champion of the World



  2. #2
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    I really don't like this. Holmgren can thank Hextall for pulling this franchise out of his extremely bad tenure as GM.

    Hextall was the first GM that got the Flyers franchise away from the "win now" regime that always saw them get into the play-offs, but never get anywhere. We finally had a GM that wanted to rebuild properly and build within the system. He has our farm system at the top of the league for prospect quality and has brought this team from the brinks of salary cap hell. The Flyers now have some room to move and were finally getting near the end of the rebuild where you start getting free-agent and trade pieces filling any voids. The goal-tending is a mess, but keep in mind that the long term goal is to possibly run Hart and Sandstrom, so anyone in between now and then was always going to be a short-term position filler. Elliott and Neuvirth, have both become injured again and although it was a possibility, it is bad luck.

    There is the rumor that he got fired due to him not wanting to fire Hakstol. I believe that Hakstol should have gone before Hextall. Special teams are not performing, our offense, defense and goal-tending is inconsistent. Ultimately, that comes down to the players first, then the coaching, then the GM for not providing adequate personnel.

    The other rumor is that he was too patient, and the Flyers organisation didn't like that. Mind you, it is this patience that has the team holding such a nice group of prospects. It's this patience that will provide such a nice, solid base for the next GM to come in and take advantage of.

    I'm wondering whether this is some sort of fan base knee jerk reaction. Our fan base is not the smartest, and a lot of people are/were calling for Hextall and Hakstols heads.

    We'll see who gets put in the hot seat, they have a nice future team set up already.


    Travis
    2014-2015 Ceeb Pool Champion of the World
    2016-2017 Ceeb Pool Champion of the World



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