The Philadelphia Flyers have reportedly offered a combined amount that is within the range of, or over, $200 million for Nashville Predators free agent defenseman Ryan Suter and New Jersey Devils free agent forward Zach Parise.
Has general manager Paul Holmgren actually made a strategic ploy through his dual 12-year offers in classic 'Bullies' style?
There is zest in the summertime, as trades and free agency excite all hardcore hockey fans.
Holmgren wants to improve his team, that much we know. Sharp observers also realize that there are a variety of ways to make that happen.
Assume for a moment that the Flyers front office boss feels Parise (who will be 28 at the end of the month), Suter (who turned 27 in January) or both men won't accept his offers and that they will opt for other suitors instead. Out-bidding every other poker player at the rink would then serve to increase whatever offers the free agents would finally accept.
If the Flyers can't add these two pieces of summer jewelry to their roster, than why not make divisional opponents spend more for them? Doing so would reduce their available cap space during the coming season when attrition normally creates the need for reinforcements.
It's also possible that the financial bar 'Homer' set could drive both prizes to teams outside the division, or conference, as well.
What if they do accept?
If one of the players accepts his offer sheet, regardless of who it is, the Flyers have strengthened their team. Plus, there is currently room within their available 2012-13 cap space for him.
If both players accept their offers a few players on the existing roster would have to be moved to make way for them. Doing so would still likely leave very little cap space for future adjustments. In that instance, the Flyers would voluntarily put themselves into a tight financial spot.
With whatever develops in the immediate future, there's no doubt that Holmgren is ready to adapt to any of the scenarios that have been described.
Dark orange knights
There is a logical reason why Philadelphia has created and sustained a large fan base for many years. All loyalists know that team founder and chairman Ed Snider is never afraid to do whatever is necessary to try and win the Stanley Cup. Authorizing his general manager to gamble by making these offers is simply further evidence of that fact.
The aggressive business tactics that are being used also reaffirm why so many teams and their fans strongly oppose the dark orange knights who call themselves the Flyers.
Sean O'Brien is based in the Philadelphia region. He has written professionally for over two decades and is currently a Featured Contributor for Yahoo! You can follow him on Twitter @SeanyOB and also read his daily Sports Blog: Insight.
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