Commentary

Philly's missing ingredient

After all these years, the Flyers still need to find the right goalie

Originally Published: June 14, 2010
By Timo Seppa and E.J. Hradek | Puck Prospectus and ESPN The Magazine
Michael LeightonAndre Ringuette/Getty ImagesMichael Leighton: Not the answer.

Plugging Holes - Philadelphia Flyers

The Hole: An elite goaltender

General manager Paul Holmgren rolled the dice going into 2009-10, dismantling the underrated netminding combo of Martin Biron and Antero Niittymaki while installing one of the league's lowest priced duos: volatile castoff Ray Emery and career backup Brian Boucher. Sticking to his guns, Holmgren stood pat at the trading deadline, allowing a talented roster to be backstopped only by the journeyman Boucher and waiver-wire pickup Michael Leighton -- two replacement level goaltenders whose career save percentages hovered around .900. Surprisingly finding themselves in the Stanley Cup finals against a loaded Blackhawks squad, the Flyers have to consider what a difference an elite goaltender could have made.

E.J. Hradek

Senior Writer, ESPN The Magazine
E.J. Hradek is a senior writer at ESPN The Magazine, joining the staff prior to its launch in 1998. He began covering hockey as a writer/editor for Hockey Illustrated in 1989.