Philadelphia’s interest should not come as a shock to anyone. The team is already dealing with injuries to key defenders Chris Pronger and Andrej Meszaros and has made moves this summer for free agents Ryan Suter and Shea Weber.
Defense is an obvious weakness for the Flyers and general manager Paul Holmgren has not been shy about trying to address the issues.
In theory, acquiring Subban would be a step in the right direction. Subban possesses the blistering slap shot that the point will lack without Pronger and Meszaros, and the 23-year-old’s ability to throw the body around is undeniable.
However, Subban’s positive traits that appear to be so needed on Philadelphia’s roster are outweighed by the negatives.
Subban has long been labeled a diver and a nuisance in the league, forming a head-to-head rivalry of sorts with former Flyers’ captain Mike Richards. He is one of the least likable players in the league because of his unabashed antics on the ice.
On top of Subban’s tendency to lose his cool, he also loses the puck. Subban’s frustrating habit of making dumb plays with the puck have prompted the creation of a Facebook page labeling him the “Turnover King.”
If Flyers fans were quick to get on Matt Carle about his turnover problems, Subban would be run out the doors of the Wells Fargo Center almost instantly.
The Flyers already have physical defensemen in Nicklas Grossmann, Braydon Coburn, Marc-Andre Bourdon and newly acquired Luke Schenn. They have agitators in the form of Scott Hartnell, Max Talbot, Wayne Simmonds and Zac Rinaldo. What they lack in terms of a power-play quarterback they make up for by playing aggressive hockey along the goal line and in the slot.
In theory, Subban is a step in the right direction, but in reality, he would largely turn out to be a redundancy and a liability.
The asking price from the Canadiens is not clear, nor are the contract terms, though we do know that Subban shot down a two-year, $5.5 million deal from Montreal (PHT).
We do know that Holmgren has refused to trade Brayden Schenn and Sean Couturier and there is no reason to believe he will adjust that stance (Philly.com). It would make little sense for a team with a thin blue line to trade a defenseman for Subban, and giving up secondary scoring like Simmonds or Matt Read would leave the team with fewer and fewer cards to play at this year’s trade deadline.
Simply put, a Subban trade would do little to bolster the blue line and would only deplete Philadelphia’s reliable offense.
Fortunately, Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer doubts the legitimacy of the trade rumors.
Forget the Subban trade rumors to the #Flyers. Nothing to it, a source tells me.— Sam Carchidi (@BroadStBull) September 12, 2012
Whatever consideration the Flyers were giving to a Subban deal, let's hope they have been swept under the rug.
Dan Kelley has been a Bleacher Report Featured Columnist since 2011. Follow him on Twitter: @dxkelley
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