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Does this deal mean Chris Pronger is finished?
When Weber’s offer sheet became public, one of the more overlooked aspects of the deal was the uncertain future of Chris Pronger.
Perhaps there was a hidden meaning behind the move by Paul Holmgren, in that Pronger’s career is over due to his ongoing concussion problems. Certainly, several followers of the Flyers in Twitterland seem to think so.
However, while Philly may be preparing for the worst when it comes to Pronger’s health, there’s a chance he could still return to action as a Flyer one day.
A quick look at the Flyers' current salary cap situation, courtesy of capgeek.com, shows they have a little over $7.8 million in cap space remaining, which is nearly the exact amount of money that Weber’s cap hit would take up under the offer sheet he just signed.
Of course, the Flyers still have to come to terms with Jakub Voracek and a couple of other role players, but they can work around that and make room for Weber and Pronger if they have to.
The more likely scenario, though, is for Pronger to start the season on the long-term injured reserve list, which means his salary would not count against the team’s cap payroll until he returned to action.
But if he does return, just imagine a defensive corps that consisted of not only a healthy Chris Pronger and Shea Weber, but also Kimmo Timonen, Braydon Coburn, Andrej Meszaros, Luke Schenn and Nicklas Grossmann. That might just be the best group of defensemen on one NHL roster of all time.
It’s unlikely to work out this way for the majority of the 2012-13 season, even if Nashville doesn’t match Weber’s offer sheet, but if Holmgren manages his payroll properly, it could be a dream situation for the Flyers down the road.