Despite what must seem like a untenable situation to most, Bob has a terrific attitude about the whole thing:
“I didn’t even have it in my thoughts to ask for a trade. Nothing terrible happened, there is just a new person in the club. Why should I move to a different team because of that? I like everything in Philadelphia. I want to compete for a roster spot, to play for the Stanley Cup with the guys. We have an ambitious club.”
On the other hand though, he still wants to play and sit idle on the bench. Bobrovsky knows he is good:
“Brian Boucher’s contract expired. Michael Leighton stayed. Bryzgalov came. But I don’t care what last name team goaltenders have. I have my own goals, objectives. I want to help Philadelphia and will continue to improve my game. I also want to play every game. The more the better. And as far as how many that will be, the coach will decide.”
One of the big newspapers in Philadelphia, The Inquirer reported that PHI started shopping Bob as early as this past spring:
According to sources, the Flyers began to shop Bobrovsky...as recently as May...The Flyers, though, couldn't get the exact asking price they hoped for when shopping Bobrovsky's services on the open market...The Flyers will continue to look to move him if the price is right. Bobrovsky.
Sergei Bobrovsky & Shane Doan
In addition, the PHI now has five goalies on their 50 player contract list. They are Bobrovsky, Bryzgalov, Leighton, Johan Backlund, and the newest addition, Jason Bacashihua, the former first-round pick, who was signed to a 1-year, two-way contract. That's a clear indication that one of the existing goaltenders will likely not remain with the Flyers for much longer, as the reporter explains in the same article:
The Flyers' goaltending situation got a little murkier...Between the Flyers and Phantoms, only four roster spots are available - two starters and two backups. That means one of those five goaltenders will be without a spot. Or if you're putting two and two together, one of them will be dealt before the season.
|Left Wing||Cap||GP||P||TOI||Center||Cap||GP||P||TOI||Right Wing||Cap||GP||P||TOI|
|Jaromir Jagr^||$3.3||82||71||20:28||Claude Giroux||$3.8||82||76||19:23||Jakub Voracek||$2.3||80||46||16:58|
|Scott Hartnell||$4.2||82||49||16:36||Daniel Briere||$6.5||77||68||18:18||J. Van Riemsdyk||$1.7||75||40||14:31|
|Maxime Talbot||$1.8||82||21||15:04||Brayden Schenn||$3.1||8||2||11:14||W. Simmonds||$1.8||80||30||13:27|
|Jody Shelley||$1.1||58||4||6:10||Blair Betts||$0.7||75||12||10:27||Andreas Nodl||$0.8||67||22||13:16|
|Eric Wellwood||$0.6||3||1||13:25||Tom Sestito||$0.6||9||4||9:31|
|Left Defense||Cap||GP||P||TOI||Right Defense||Cap||GP||P||TOI||Goal||Cap||GP||W||SV%|
|Chris Pronger||$4.9||50||25||22:29||Matt Carle||$3.4||82||40||21:59||Ilya Bryzgalov||$5.7||68||36||.921|
|Kimmo Timonen||$6.3||82||37||22:28||Andrej Meszaros||$4.0||81||32||21:07||Sergei Bobrovsky||$1.8||54||28||.915|
|Andreas Lilja||$0.7||52||7||17:25||Braydon Coburn||$3.2||82||16||21:04|
|Salary Cap||$64,300,000||LTIR||Ian Laperriere||$1.2||DNP|
|Cap Payroll||$64,088,095||Carry-Over Bns||$1.4||Pnlty|
|Cap Space||$211,905||23 players||Roster Bonuses||$3.8||Total|
^ most recent stats
Phoenix needs a better starting goalie. So lets make a deal. What's PHI GM Paul Holmgren's asking price for Bob? Must be something more than what he has been offered thus far, since Bob is still a Flyer. My guess would be that a high draft pick or two would get the deal done.
From PHX, I would say a second rounder and either a fourth rounder or Jason Labarbera (sign and trade scenario not withstanding) could get a deal done. With Michael Leighton already under contract by PHI, one might think the inclusion of Labarbera is unnecessary. However, considering Leighton's injury history, and his spotty post surgery performance, Labarbera would be a more reliable back up. Plus, Labarbera's cap hit is smaller than Leighton's, and the former has already forged a successful tandem relationship with Bryzgalov.
In his interview, Bob was also asked about the physical strain of a full NHL schedule, to which Bob responded as follows:
"I think so. It turned out that by November I had been playing hockey for five months. And then the rollercoaster started: up and down. But I am not going to look for excuses for my shortcomings. This is my life and I set up the preparations myself. And I alone am responsible. I simply came to some conclusions and this summer I decided to make some changes."
Despite his "shortcomings," Bob put up a very respectable .915 Sv% as a rookie with PHI -- much better than both current Coyotes goalies. He will turn 23 years old in September. He's signed for two more seasons and is still an RFA after that contract's expiry. Obviously, his best years are still ahead of him.
The other heralded "backup" on the trade market is Vancouver Canuck Cory Schneider. Just today, reporter Andy Strickland revealed that Schneider rumors are resurfacing:
The day will eventually come when Vancouver officially chooses to pull the plug and move their prized asset. Many expect a trade involving the former Boston College standout could come as early as training camp or as late as the trade deadline. Most around the league view Schneider as a legit number one NHL goaltender. Just look around the league and you’ll find plenty of teams where Schneider could walk in and immediately be the guy. Two of those teams are Columbus and Phoenix who have apparently expressed some level of interest in Schneider.
Cory Schneider with the big left pad save on Thomas Vanek