Flyers' deal with Bryzgalov still a work in progress

Flyers' deal with Bryzgalov still a work in progress
June 22, 2011, 4:40 pm
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Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Posted: 12:37 p.m. Updated: 6:20 p.m.
By Sarah BaickerCSNPhilly.com

Is Ilya Bryzgalov seeking to be the highest-paid goalie in the National Hockey League?

Is that why there are persistent rumors that the Flyers and Bryzgalov's agent, Ritch Winter, have discussed a seven-year deal worth 50 million?

The Flyers deny any such offer has been extended or even discussed.

He wants to be paid well and be on a good team, said a source close to the talks.

According to Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet.ca, the Flyers and Bryzgalov have in fact agreed to a long-term deal. A tweet from CBCs Elliotte Friedman Wednesday stated the deal thats in place could be worth about 7 million per year.

The operative word is could.

The Flyers, however, have denied the accuracy of both reports, which doesn't come as a surprise. Of course, nothing can be announced until July 1.

"Rumors are rumors," general manager Paul Holmgren said in an e-mail. "We are continuing to try and reach an agreement with Ilya but it is safe to say that we are not close to achieving this."

"We want a deal that works for everybody," Flyers chairman Ed Snider said before Wednesday's NHL Awards ceremonies at the Palm Resort and Casino. "We don't have anything in place yet. It's not done yet and it can't be done before we get the new cap, anyway."

That said, Snider said he isn't concerned about a deal coming to completion.

The Rangers' Henrik Lundqvist averages the highest salary among goalies at 6.875 million a year. That's why the 7 million figure is being discussed all over the Internet.

Yes, the Flyers will likely overpay for Bryzgalov, but a figure approaching or at 7 million would ruin their future cap years given the expensive contracts they already have in place with Chris Pronger, Mike Richards, Kimmo Timonen, Scott Hartnell, Jeff Carter, Danny Briere you get the picture.

Because of the NHL's tagging rule, the Flyers cant officially sign the 31-year-old Wednesday was his birthday former Phoenix Coyote until they clear space under the salary cap.

Thats expected to happen soon quite possibly at the draft, which begins Friday in Minnesota.

Bryzgalov and Winter were in Philadelphia last week to meet with Flyers brass. The Russian netminder left the city without a contract, but sources close to the team said discussions went very well, progress was made and that a deal was expected to work out.
E-mail Sarah Baicker at sbaicker@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow her on Twitter at @SBaickerCSN.

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