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Flyers Acquire Rights to Ilya Bryzgalov

For the second year in a row, the Flyers have traded for a pending free agent’s negotiating rights. Late on Tuesday, the Flyers sent Matt Clackson, a third round pick, and a conditional pick to the Phoenix Coyotes for the right to speak with free agent goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov.

After rumors swirled that the Flyers were interested in acquiring Bryzgalov, the team finally did. Now, the biggest hurdle will be the goaltender’s demands. It has been reported that Bryzgalov was seeking a multi-year contract with a raise from his $4.5 million salary last year. If true, the Flyers will be hard pressed to offer him a contract that fits under the cap.

As it stands, the Flyers have $58.97 million committed to 18 players for next year. Depending on how much the salary cap goes up – which could be as much as $5 million, though estimates are closer to a three or four million increase – the Flyers will have to get creative.

Over at Broad Street Hockey, I already showed that Ilya Bryzgalov would not be much of an improvement in net, and that was even before accounting for the pieces that would have to be subtracted in order to afford him. But here we are, with the Flyers giving up (another) third round draft pick just to speak to a goalie for three weeks. Maybe they can’t sign him and swap his rights for a draft pick, maybe they sign him for dirt cheap, but maybe they are forced to trade Jeff Carter. Stay tuned.