It’s been 184 days since the Flyers fired Alain Vigneault and 35 days since they announced they would be moving on from interim coach Mike Yeo, yet the team’s search for its next head coach continues.

General manager Chuck Fletcher said at the end of the season they would take time to build the “perfect candidate profile,” and by being patient, the Flyers have the benefit of a deeper pool of candidates to pick from than maybe even they anticipated. The likes of Barry Trotz, Peter DeBoer, and Bruce Cassidy, all of whom have led teams to the Stanley Cup Final, have surprisingly become available in recent weeks.

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The Flyers are not focused on a deadline to hire a coach, Fletcher said. However, there is about a month until the NHL draft (July 7-8), which is quickly followed by the start of free agency on July 13. Here is where things currently stand in the Flyers’ search:

Confirmed candidates

The New York Islanders shockingly fired Trotz on May 9, the news sparking immediate interest from around the league, including the Flyers. Trotz is known for helping teams turn things around quickly, especially defensively. The 59-year-old’s team’s have finished in the top 10 defensively in seven of the last eight seasons, including in 2019, when he transformed the Islanders from worst to first in that category. Considering the Flyers’ defensive woes last season (they allowed the sixth-highest total of goals), it was no surprise that they interviewed Trotz early in the process.

Fletcher said he is looking to both build for the future and win quickly. Trotz certainly satisfies the latter. He has a track record of getting the most out of a team’s talent, most recently leading the Islanders to back-to-back conference finals in 2020 and 2021. He’s the third-winningest coach in NHL history (914-670-60-168) and helped the Washington Capitals get over the hump and win the Stanley Cup in 2018.

The Flyers also have interviewed John Tortorella, another Stanley Cup-winning coach, who has been working as a TV analyst for ESPN. Tortorella, who has coached the Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Rangers, Vancouver Canucks, and Columbus Blue Jackets, is a fiery motivator who’s known for getting his players to adopt his identity and culture. The 63-year-old is a physically demanding coach to play for, which has been both his greatest strength and biggest downfall. Despite seemingly having a short shelf life, Tortorella has had success almost everywhere he’s been to the tune of 673 career wins.

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Recently, Mike Vellucci interviewed with the Flyers, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman. The Penguins assistant has earned numerous coaching accolades in the minors and steadily has been working his way upward. He has been praised for being a players’ coach, which could be an attractive trait after the Flyers failed to respond to Vigneault’s more traditional coaching style. Vellucci, 55, has coached the past two seasons under Mike Sullivan and oversaw the Penguins’ third-ranked penalty kill last season.

Who else is available?

There is no shortage of candidates at the Flyers’ disposal, especially considering that a third of the league’s teams began the offseason with uncertainty at the coaching position.

Flyers Hall of Famer Rick Tocchet is one of the most popular names out there. He’s currently an analyst at TNT but coached as recently as 2020-21 with the Arizona Coyotes. Tocchet, 58, is a favorite among locals and would bring a disciplined, hard-to-play-against identity to the team. The former Flyers power forward kept a limited Coyotes roster competitive during his time in the desert and previously won two Cups with the Penguins as an assistant.

DeBoer is also available after he was fired by the Vegas Golden Knights in the wake of their missing the playoffs. Before that, the 53-year-old had led the Knights to the conference finals twice in two years. Between San Jose and Vegas, DeBoer’s teams have won at least one playoff series in five of the past eight seasons.

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Paul Maurice, most recently of the Winnipeg Jets, has 775 career wins split between the Jets, Carolina Hurricanes, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Hartford Whalers. Maurice, 53, stepped down with the Jets midway through last season but left the door open for a potential return.

The newest name on the market, Cassidy, led the Boston Bruins to the playoffs in each of his six seasons there. Cassidy, who coached the Bruins to the Stanley Cup Final in 2018-19 and won the Jack Adams Trophy in 2019-20, was surprisingly dismissed despite guiding the Bruins to 51 wins last season.

The Flyers don’t have to stick to head coaches in their search. Two assistants who could be good fits are Jim Montgomery, a former Flyer currently with the St. Louis Blues, and Kirk Muller of the Calgary Flames. Montgomery coached the Dallas Stars from 2018-19 and preaches the importance of puck possession, which the Flyers could stand to learn. He compiled a .579 points percentage over 114 games but was terminated by the Stars for “unprofessional conduct” in 2019 and later entered rehab for alcoholism. Muller, who struggled as head coach of the Hurricanes between 2011-14 (.500 winning percentage), has recently been recognized for developing Calgary’s forwards, and the Flyers have numerous players who they feel have unlocked offensive potential.

The Flyers have aimed to keep updates on the coaching search private, so they may have talked to some of these options already.

Who else is looking

Even if the Flyers find someone they think is the perfect fit, they have to convince him to come to Philadelphia. Considering that the Flyers are strapped for talent and for salary-cap room, it might not be the easiest sell.

For coaches in high demand, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Two teams who made the playoffs are currently looking for coaches. The Stars, who finished fourth in the Central Division, lost their coach when Rick Bowness stepped down May 20. Meanwhile, the Bruins, who also made a first-round exit, parted ways with Cassidy on Monday. Then there is Vegas, which has a roster capable of competing for a Stanley Cup but last season was decimated by injuries.

The Jets and Detroit Red Wings also are without coaches after missing the playoffs. Finally, the Chicago Blackhawks (didn’t make the playoffs), the Florida Panthers (lost in the second round), and the Edmonton Oilers (reached Western Conference Finals), have interim coaches and still could join those shopping for a new leader this offseason.