If an NHL general manager’s phone is ringing these days, there’s a good shot Chuck Fletcher is on the other end of the call. The Flyers’ GM is casting a net so wide that he wants to reach out to all other 30 teams with the league’s trade deadline now less than a month away.
After the bye week the Flyers found themselves 14 points out of a playoff spot and Fletcher is trying to make moves with this year and the future in mind. No trading first-round picks for expiring contracts, but getting a player that could have a big role for years to come is absolutely on the table.
“Whether it’s now, the summer, we need to find some pieces to improve our team,” Fletcher said.
“We could both buy and sell, but I guess my point is every decision we make, if we’re going to try to improve our team going forward and we can get that player now, great. There’s always opportunities. So for me it’s not the next eight games or even the rest of the year. From this point forward, we have to get better. To be better next year, we may have to try to get better this year.”
It’s a hard thing to accomplish for a team that knows how far away a playoff spot is to try and erase that kind of deficit while Fletcher, who was hired in December, is looking at all options from small trades to doing major surgery on the roster.
Captain Claude Giroux, who Fletcher said was untouchable in any potential trade scenario, is trying to get his teammates to look even smaller than just one week at a time.