Flyers Fire GM Hextall

by | Nov 26, 2018 | News, NHL, Rumors | 30 comments

The Philadelphia Flyers fired general manager Ron Hextall. Team president Paul Holmgren is overseeing the search for Hextall’s replacement.

The Philadelphia Flyers relieved general manager Ron Hextall of his duties. (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Didn’t see this coming. I expected head coach Dave Hakstol was on the hot seat, given the Flyers’ ongoing inconsistency.  Hextall’s replacement could quickly relieve Hakstol of his duties and bring in his own man behind the bench.

Hired as Flyers GM in May 2014, Hextall took a different approach than predecessors like Holmgren and Bob Clarke. Gone were the days of big trades and expensive free-agent signings.

Hextall instead freed up salary-cap space by shipping out the contracts of sidelined or aging veterans such as Chris Pronger and Vincent Lecavalier while restocking the Flyers’ farm system. Promising youngsters such as Ivan Provorov, Travis Konency, and Nolan Patrick were Hextall draft picks.

Hextall preached patience as he attempted to rebuild his roster, and for a while, Flyers fans bought into his program. At times, the club showed promise but inconsistency plagued them. Like his predecessors, Hextall couldn’t find a reliable starting goaltender, turning instead to affordable, injury-prone or inconsistent options like Steve Mason, Michal Neuvirth, and Brian Elliott. He also raised eyebrows with his hiring of Hakstol, a successful NCAA coach who lacked prior NHL experience.

This season, Hextall drew criticism for his ongoing inability to address the Flyers’ creaky goaltending and sloppy defensive play, especially on the penalty kill. As the club continued to blow hot and cold, Hextall’s calls for patience wore thin amid calls for change from frustrated Flyers’ followers. With the club in danger of tumbling to the bottom of the standings, the front office obviously felt a change in direction was needed. 

No word yet as to who becomes Hextall’s replacement. Whoever gets the job will be expected to make moves that provide more immediate and positive results.

 







30 Comments

  1. Who are the best available GM candidates?

    • Mark Hunter? If he’ll leave London again. Could be why he isn’t anywhere already in that with Toronto he was close to home and The Knights.

    • THEY CAN HAVE CHIA

  2. Will always be a great Flyer in my book. Did a great job in rebuilding the farm and injecting youth to an aging program. However, he failed where all GMs before him. He failed to find his replacement. Hopefully, Carter Hart proves that he was right after all.

  3. Poor move by the Flyers.
    Hextall was building something special on the back end.

    • He BUILT something special on the backend. Him leaving only changes that if the new GM decides to trade those guys and I don’t see why anyone would want to do that. His inability to turf his coach when things clearly weren’t working after promising Flyers fans that this would be the year that the patience in the build would start to pay off was his undoing. Hate to see the guy go but at the same time it’s not all about prospects and cap space in Philly. You need some positive results. The best thing about today’s news is knowing Hakstol is now most definitely a lame duck head coach.

    • Sure was. Can crack a walnut on those buns.

    • I agree …Shoreorpark

      just needed one more year and then throw in Carter Hart with Sanhiem Provorov and Myers …

      • Hart will be 2-3 more years. There is no plan to bridge us to Hart. Also have to consider that Hart may not be all that in the end, then what?

  4. No idea how this makes any sense in Philly. Hexy has been getting high marks for his dealings and some good drafting. You can fault him on not getting a # 1 keeper. Coach needed to go first.

    • He actually got low marks on his dealings. besides signing JVR there were no dealings that were good. (Maybe Schenn?). Anyway, he was clearly afraid of the risk of a big trade or too stubborn. Not sure which…

  5. I think this moves Philly into the top chaser for Bobrovsky if he hits the market…

    And in other ‘shocking’ new Karl Alzner is on waivers….bet he clears……

    • if Bob was still in Philly, he would have been destroyed by now. No playoff series wins still..

      hes is not coming back for 80 mill. no shot with Hart coming in a couple of yrs.

  6. Obviously I’m as far away from a flyers fan as any person could ever be and I was worried about what Hextall was building that team into. The flyers organization has NEVER had any kind of patience and have made a lot of rash decisions over the years. There should have been zero expectation that this was a contender this year so they should have just waited a little longer. He did fail at finding a competent goal tender for the present and that is probably what did him in. The flyers have a decent future and would have overtook and surpassed the Penguins eventually. Now I’m betting they make some bad trades for veteran has beens, which is Holmgren and Clarke’s specialty. Oh well, at least I won’t have to see the flyers hoist the cup any time soon.

  7. To make sure that gm is not the only problem, team should make 1 or 2 minors trades to boost playoff chance.

  8. Good move by the flyers they were going nowhere under hextall he failed to get the glaring needs at defense and goaltending. The young dmen besides Provorov aren’t looking good in the minors let alone the nhl

  9. I have this feeling that Hextall wlll be one who is judged well by hockey historians.In that he saw the increasing trends and planned well for them but the fan base doesn’t want the new hockey values and they after all are footing the bill.

    Patience is a virtue lacking in Philly where their minds run so strong with tough Broad Street Bully philosophy, they can’t see the inevitable changes in front of them.

    • flyers fans want hardwork and to win. media and many outside of the philly area are lost in the 70s. no one cares about fighting anymore. philly is no diff than Montreal, NY or Boston. If you don’t play hard, they want you out. If you don’t win, they want you out. pretty simple.

      • Agree 100%

  10. as a flyer fan i am disappointed at this move. Agreed the upgrade at goalie should have happened long ago but hexy had the patience to rebuild thru the draft and restock the farm. Hextall and lombardi did a good job turning around the king franchise with success, the big difference… being that LA had established goaltending. Providing the new GM does not tear apart the foundation that has been built thus far , he will reap the benefits from the hard work of Mr. Hextall. Hex will not be out of work for long.

  11. Hextall loses his job but Chiarelli doesnt

    • Most teams,do not fire GM during the mid season.

      This is usually.

  12. I actually think Hextall did a good job there, but the Brian Elliot signing alone is cause to fire him.

    Elliot sucks. Always has and always will.

    Let’s hope the Flyers have a few more years of chaos under a new GM.

    • Thank you. At least we’re not Edmonton which will never be able to keep talent due to the fact that they are in Edmonton…

      • 🙄

  13. That Brayden Schenn trade alone was worthy of being fired.

    • Pretty sure that’ll work on out well for the Flyers

    • That’s not true at all. They traded Schenn so Patrick would have to make the team and Morgan Frost will be their number 2 centre very soon and for a long time. That was a good trade for both teams.

    • I disagree. He got two first round picks for a guy that has averaged just over 20 goals and 50 points a season, including last years career year. Not a bad return at all, even considering they had to take that plug Lehtera back to make the cap work for St.Louis. The bad thing about it is it made them worse for the time being which doesn’t help them today and too much of that didn’t help his longterm employment.

  14. A suggestion tonight that Hextall may have been fired because he refused to fire the coach. That’s a new one.