ST. LOUIS - Speaking to a group of reporters Wednesday, general manager Ron Hextall said he would have to evaluate the Flyers' leadership group in the offseason because of the team's "inconsistencies."
On Thursday, coach Craig Berube conceded that the Flyers have missed Kimmo Timonen's calming influence on the ice and in the locker room, but he said he was satisfied with the leadership group, which includes captain Claude Giroux and alternates Mark Streit and Wayne Simmonds.
"I think G and the leaders have done a good job, to be honest with you," Berube said before the Flyers faced St. Louis. "I think they've prepared themselves night in and night out to compete hard and work hard and perform at the same time. It's still a learning process for these guys. Giroux is still a young captain."
Like Hextall, Giroux said it's not just himself and the alternates who are the leaders.
"It's not one, two, or three players, it's everybody that comes together," he said. "It could be one game that one line steps up, the next game it could be another line. But at the end of the day, you have to come here and do your job and play as a team."
Giroux, 27, known for his relentless play, said there was nothing he would do differently this season, as far as the way he serves as captain. He said that the team has a great chemistry away from the game but that it "wasn't as good as we want it to be" on the ice.
"This team is one of the most important things in my life and I take it to heart," Giroux said of the Flyers' fade from playoff contention.
The Flyers got off to a miserable start for the third straight season, and they have lost their last six games (0-5-1) to teams that are not in a playoff spot. As a result, they will miss the playoffs for the second time in Giroux's three years as captain.
The recent losses to lightweights are puzzling because the Flyers entered Thursday with points in their last seven games (4-0-3) against teams in playoff positions.
"I don't know how to explain it," Giroux said. "It's like when we have big games, we kind of find ways to play at our best. I don't know if we're not ready or our motivation isn't that good when we play teams that are not as good. It's obviously something we have to look at. Good teams find a way to be consistent every night."
The Flyers signed 5-foot-10, 194-pound Cornell senior Cole Bardreau, 21, to a two-year entry-level contract that starts in 2015-16. The undrafted Bardreau, a gritty forward who overcame a broken neck he suffered in 2013, will report to the AHL Phantoms next week on a tryout contract.
Bardreau, a native of Fairport, N.Y., led Cornell in scoring this season with 22 points (five goals, 17 assists).
Hextall called him a pest in the Ryan White mold and a "heart and soul type of guy. He plays hard. He's an agitator, he skates well, and you notice him every game because he's physically involved."