Thursday, June 23, 2011, will go down in Philadelphia Flyers history as the end of an era.
That'll happen when your team trades two of its biggest names—captain Mike Richards and fellow center Jeff Carter—in the span of about 30 minutes just weeks after dealing for a franchise goaltender (Ilya Bryzgalov).
The term "new era" echoes the historic Flyers trade that brought Eric Lindros from the Quebec Nordiques back in June of 1992. In both respective deals, the Flyers sent a lot of talent out of town in hope of a brighter future.
We all know how the Lindros trade panned out. The Flyers gave up a bunch of players in their prime for the guy everyone thought was "The Next One." About a thousand concussions and a handful of early playoff exits later, Lindros was dealt.
Flyers GM Paul Holmgren and former GM Bobby Clarke have both been accused of not letting the Flyers' younger players develop. Well, it's obvious that Richards and Carter had time to show what they were made of. Both are 26 years old, and both played in Philly for six full seasons.
I don't think it was lack of talent that got them booted as much as lack of passion. That said, these were two key trades that took place. It's just that something had to give after this season's playoff exit.
I'll leave the copying and pasting of the trade details to the other guys. At this point the impact of the trades are up in the air until the Flyers actually hit the ice. What I would like to do, however, is sum up how happy I am right now in song form.
This article was also published at Philly Sports God Blog.
A.B.S is a Philly-born rapper. You can listen to more A.B.S. at www.ABSmusic.net. You can also purchase the new album, titled "Lifetime," on iTunes.