With the Philadelphia Flyers acquiring the rights to Ilya Bryzgalov last week, the organization is in a heart-pounding race to sign their new No. 1 goalie to a long-term deal.
In order to do so, the Flyers organization has to clear up a pretty good chunk of cap space. Bryzgalov will command at least $5 or $6 million a year. The main trade target popping up in rumors has been Jeff Carter.
Why Jeff Carter? Because he makes about $6 million a year and probably has the most trade value of anyone of the current roster.
Trading away a guy like Jeff Carter would be a mistake for the orange and black though. You are going to trade one of your top players as part of a salary dump?
Here are five reasons that the Flyers should hold on to Mr. Carter.
We all remember the Jeff Carter trade talks a few years back when his contract was going to expire. How did the Flyers respond? Oh, only by signing him to a life-time contract that would keep him in Philly until the 2022 season.
Much like Mike Richards, the Flyers knew they had a special player in Carter. You do not just sign a franchise player to a 10-plus-year deal and then trade him away to clear cap space.
Everyone keeps saying, "No team wants Scott Hartnell." Really? If I were an average or below average team, I would love to get my hands on a consistent 20-goal scorer who plays with heart every night.
I know Flyers fans are fed up with his penalty antics, but I am sure a desperate team would be willing to take on Hartnell's game.
Other players making big money next season are Kris Versteeg and Matt Carle.
Perhaps no other Flyer has shown as much heart and determination as Jeff Carter over the past two seasons.
Last year it was the broken foot. This year it was the sprained knee. Carter returned rather early from both injuries to help the Flyers advance in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Imagine what he could have done at 100 percent.
The Flyers have a long history of a great farm system. That great farm system from five or six years ago is now at the NHL level and is paying dividends for the organization.
Richards, Giroux, Carter, van Riemsdyk and now Bobrovsky are all examples of how deep the Flyers really are. Every fan wants to see their farm team succeed and turn into a great NHL team. Don't break it up now. This team still has a good five years left in them.
Since 2008, Jeff Carter has been the team's leading goal scorer. Carter has averaged 38 goals during that time frame.
The Flyers have had one of the more potent offenses the past couple seasons, yes, but you cannot underestimate that ability in the postseason. The Flyers struggled to get pucks past Tim Thomas all series long. Now granted, Thomas was the Playoffs MVP.
But if the Flyers want to win a Stanley Cup, they are going to have to score against a pretty tough goaltender.