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Flyers Notes: Holmgren says he's staying as Flyers GM

About 90 minutes after Ed Snider hinted that Paul Holmgren may become president of the Flyers, Holmgren said he would remain as general manager next season.

Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren. (Steven M. Falk/Staff Photographer)
Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren. (Steven M. Falk/Staff Photographer)Read more

About 90 minutes after Ed Snider hinted that Paul Holmgren may become president of the Flyers, Holmgren said he would remain as general manager next season.

Snider, chairman of the Flyers' parent company, Comcast Spectacor, said the club hired assistant general manager Ron Hextall last year to be the GM someday, but Holmgren said he was not ready to relinquish the job. Holmgren hired Hextall.

"He's an excellent resource in our organization," Holmgren said Friday, after the Flyers cleared out their lockers at their Voorhees practice facility. "He's a tremendous hockey man, and I have no question that he's ready to be a general manager at any point. We'll see where that goes, but I'm certainly not in any position today where I want to change chairs."

Holmgren said he would give permission for Hextall to talk to another team if it wanted to pursue him as a GM. But he made it clear he hopes Hextall stays.

Snider said the club was in the process of "analyzing everybody's title" and that Holmgren would be the head of the hockey operations.

"We're going to all sit down, and it's going to be up to Paul," Snider said.

Hextall "didn't come in to stay assistant GM forever, but that doesn't mean tomorrow," Snider said. "It's really Paul's call. All I have to do is endorse it. If I don't agree with it, then we have a behind-closed-door discussion."

Timonen staying?

Veteran defenseman Kimmo Timonen appears to be leaning toward playing another season. He said he would make his decision within the month, but he sounded as though he will come back.

Timonen, 39, who will be an unrestricted free agent, said he would play only for the Flyers.

"This is my place," he said. "If I get back here, this is where I want to be. I like our team. I like the team moving forward, because we can get some young guys, young forwards, who can be faster. I won't get any younger, that's for sure, and probably not faster, but I feel like I can still help the team. But again, I want to take my time and see if I can get to the level that I want to be."

Lecavalier review

Holmgren admitted that Vinny Lecavalier was a better fit under former coach Peter Laviolette's attacking system and that the forward had a difficult time adapting to Craig Berube's defense-first style.

Holmgren said Lecavalier had a "lot of unfortunate things go against him" - including a back injury and a position change. "But, in my opinion, he's still a good player, and having said what I just said, he still scored 20 goals, which is no small feat. Moving forward, we just need to try to figure out how things fit a little better."

Pursuing Weber?

Snider said he didn't think Nashville would deal star defenseman Shea Weber, but if it did, the Flyers would get in line.

Injury updates

Holmgren said winger Michael Raffl has bone chips in his left elbow that will require minor surgery, and center Sean Couturier may have a sports hernia that could need surgery. The Flyers are waiting for the doctor's report on Couturier.

Steve Downie recently underwent ear surgery to improve his hearing, and he will have another procedure on the other ear, Holmgren said. The problems affected the winger's balance on the ice.


Holmgren said he was considering making an offer to unrestricted free agent Ray Emery as the team's backup goalie. . . . Team Canada wanted Claude Giroux to play in the world championships, but the Flyers would not give him permission. "He still has [health] issues," said Holmgren, who would not elaborate.