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How the Flyers Can, And Won’t, Use Carter Hart’s Cap Relief

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The Philadelphia Flyers have some options with Carter Hart's cap relief, but a trade isn't likely. (Photo: AP)

It was revealed on Monday, per a report from TSN’s Darren Dreger, that the Philadelphia Flyers would be getting salary cap relief on Carter Hart’s cap hit. This effectively means that the Flyers will have Hart’s $3.979 million to use on whatever they wish.

With Hart away from the team indefinitely to deal with the legal proceedings surrounding his sexual assault charge, the first thing the Flyers might do is acquire another goalie to complement incumbent rookie starter Sam Ersson.

General manager Danny Briere had already expressed that the team did not want to run Ersson into the ground so early into his NHL career.

Plus, the Flyers have already made it this far. Philadelphia is third in the Metropolitan Division with 56 points, but sinking fast as losers of their last five games. Briere and Co. may feel obligated to show their faith in the team and reward their work by adding another goalie.

The caveat is that the organization has already made its plans clear and has stated that it will not be adding players to make a playoff run. Further compounding this is the price of goalies on the NHL trade market this year. On a past episode of “Insider Trading” Pierre LeBrun revealed the Nashville Predators’ cost for Juuse Saros is going to be an arm and both legs.

So, even though the Flyers won’t be in on Saros or another goalie of his caliber, they won’t be able to trade low-value assets for a rental goalie, either. Plus, they had the chance to claim Ivan Prosvetov, a Colorado Avalanche goalie with some NHL experience, on waivers, and elected not to.

By leaving Prosvetov (who ultimately went unclaimed) to the other NHL teams, the Flyers have effectively signaled their confidence in Ersson, Cal Petersen, and Felix Sandstrom to carry the load for the rest of this season. Alexei Kolosov will soon be on his way to North America, and Carson Bjarnason has progressed nicely with the Brandon Wheat Kings. Yegor Zavragin has also been electric in Russia’s minor and junior leagues.

If the Flyers end up adding a goalie, it will be because they feel they did it for the right price. It’s unlikely, though.

Instead, expect the team to use their newly found cap space to facilitate a three-team trade or eat a bad contract in exchange for other assets.

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Jonathan Bailey has been Philly Hockey Now's Flyers beat reporter since 2023. He can be reached on Twitter/X @ByJonBailey, or via email at jonathanbaileyy@gmail.com

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