Flyers Allowed to Speak With Sharks' Evgeni Nabokov

Bob Cunningham@BCunningham215Senior Analyst IJune 27, 2010

CHICAGO - MAY 23:  Goaltender Evgeni Nabokov #20 of the San Jose Sharks looks on while taking on the Chicago Blackhawks in Game Four of the Western Conference Finals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the United Center on May 23, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

According to a few different media outlets, the Philadelphia Flyers have been given permission to speak with current Sharks' goalie (but soon-to-be free agent) Evgeni Nabokov.

The talk of the Flyers adding a goalie this offseason is comparable to the talk of the Eagles adding a wide receiver pre-2008, the Phillies adding an ace pitcher a couple years ago, and the Sixers picking up a legitimate scoring threat.

Well, the Eagles drafted DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin, so that has been addressed. The Phillies traded for Cliff Lee, and then traded Cliff Lee for Roy Halladay, so consider that more-than addressed. And now it's looking like the Sixers might have found their scorer in Evan Turner.

That just leaves the Flyers to finish things off, and it looks like they might do it with Nabokov.

Paul Holmgren has been given permission to speak with Nabokov's agent, Don Meehan, and see what it would take for Nabokov to sign on. If they can't come to an agreement, then the Flyers lose nothing.

But, of course, if they agree on a deal then Philly would have to send San Jose a draft pick to compensate.

Being that Nabokov is 35, the Flyers can give him an incentive-laden deal with a very low yearly salary and cap number. Or, in other words, exactly what they did with Chris Pronger.

Pronger, by the way, just happens to have the same agent as Nabokov.

All signs point to this going down, and rather quickly at that. Holmgren will have about three days to work at Meehan and Nabokov and get them to agree to a deal. After that, on July 1st, Nabokov becomes a free agent and the Flyers can be outbid by any other team.

At 35, Nabokov is clearly only a short-term solution, but that could be all the Flyers need to get back into the playoffs and make another run. If they had been able to use Nabokov in the Stanley Cup Finals, they might have hoisted The Cup for the first time since 1975.

Instead, it was just another long line in Philadelphia's history of championship defeats: the Sixers in 2001, the Eagles in 2004, the Phillies in 2009, and now the Flyers in 2010.

2011, however, could be much different with a proven veteran in goal and a team full of guys who have come too close to kissing The Cup to not go after it even harder the next year.

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