Flyers Notes: Bobby Ryan Trade Rumor, Danny Briere a Goner, Bryz Next?

Flyers Notes: Bobby Ryan Trade Rumor, Danny Briere a Goner, Bryz Next?

It’s been a busy and frequently strange 24-plus hours around the Flyers to say the least. These are just a handful of the developments since the latest on Mark Streit and Jonathan Bernier.

• Bobby Ryan to Philadelphia is starting to have that inevitable feel to it simply because the Cherry Hill native has been linked to the club for years. According to Tim Panaccio, the Flyers and Ducks are at it again.

The potential deal would send Braydon Coburn and this year’s 11th overall draft choice to Anaheim for Ryan. The 25-year-old winger scored 30 goals in each of his first four full seasons in the NHL, though he fell off that pace in 2013, netting 11 in 46 games.

Obviously, the Flyers would be helping themselves with a scoring winger, but they would also be creating another hole on their already depleted defensive corps.

Also, giving up their first-round pick seems a bit much given how deep the NHL draft is this season and when the Flyers are in desperate need of defensive help.

Coburn is coming off of disappointing season that ended early because of a separated shoulder, and given how well Erik Gustafsson and Oliver Lauridsen played in his absence, you could make the case he’s expendable.  On the other hand, as Panotch remarks in the video below, the 11th pick is a bit much – especially considering Ryan might be a luxury for the league’s ninth-ranked offense.

What was weird about all of this however was the Inquirer’s Sam Carchidi sort of refuted the story, saying he heard otherwise earlier on Tuesday. Carchidi added the story sounded “iffy.” Maybe Paul Holmgren is trolling everybody?

>> Sources: Flyers interested in deal for Ducks’ Ryan [CSN]

• One thing’s for sure, Homer wasn’t joking around when he shut down Ritch Winter, agent for Ilya Bryzgalov.

Word got out on Tuesday that Winter had been assured by Holmgren that Bryz was safe. In spite of the rumors, the organization would not be using a compliance buyout on the remaining seven years of the netminder’s contract. Frank Seravalli for the Daily News confirmed:

This mind you was mere hours after reports emerged that the Flyers were frontrunners for Bernier. Maybe the front office had already deemed the asking price was too high. Maybe it was a smokescreen compelling the Kings to stop wasting everybody’s time with this Jake Voracek nonsense.

Holmgren put that notion to rest, along with the fairy tale that he promised anything to Bryzgalov or his agent. Tim Panaccio followed up to obtain this gem:

I didn't assure Ritch Winter of anything. When the time comes to do our business we will do whatever is best for our hockey team.

Ilya Bryzgalov is still the best soap opera in Philly sports. Will he stay or will he go? Even Paul Holmgren doesn’t know!

• The one thing we can confirm besides this offseason being far too chaotic already (and they’ve hardly done anything) is the obvious. Per ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, the Flyers have informed Danny Briere that they will invoke the amnesty clause after the Stanley Cup Finals conclude, deleting the final two years of his contract.

A source told that Briere and Paul Holmgren met last week, at which time the Flyers' GM informed the veteran center of the team’s decision. No bitter feelings, though, as I’m told Briere feels Holmgren handled it with class.

At $6.5 million, Briere’s cap figure is the largest on the team, but his production on the ice has been severely lacking for the past two seasons, his worst in over a decade. He turns 36 this October, and has been battling an increasing number of injuries, so there was little reason to believe it would improve much.

We’ll certainly reflect further on Briere’s six seasons with the Flyers once the move is official.

>> Rumblings: Letang, Briere, coaches & more [ESPN]

Eagles Inactives: Bennie Logan (groin) out vs. Vikings

Eagles Inactives: Bennie Logan (groin) out vs. Vikings

Eagles defensive tackle Bennie Logan (groin) is inactive for the team’s game against the Vikings at the Linc on Sunday afternoon.

Logan missed practice all week but was listed as questionable and was said to be a game-time decision. Beau Allen will start in his place, but the Eagles will likely use more Allen, Fletcher Cox, Destiny Vaeao and Vinny Curry at tackle.

While Logan is inactive, Ron Brooks (calf), Leodis McKelvin (hamstring) and Mychal Kendricks (ribs) are all active. The trio was listed as questionable coming into the weekend.

Joining Logan among the inactive players are: OL Dillon Gordon, OL Josh Andrews, OL Isaac Seumalo, CB C.J. Smith, S Terrence Brooks and WR Bryce Treggs.

Despite Tregg’s getting extended reps this week in practice, he’s still not playing.

For the Vikings, wideout Stefon Diggs (groin), who was listed as questionable, is active.

Vikings inactives: WR Laquon Treadwell, WR Jarius Wright, LB Kentrell Brothers, C Nick Easton, G Willie Beavers, DT Sharrif Floyd, TE MyCole Pruitt.

Union-Red Bulls 5 things: Aim to finish strong against streaking New York

Union-Red Bulls 5 things: Aim to finish strong against streaking New York

Union vs. New York Red Bulls
4 p.m. on TCN 

Having all but officially made the postseason for the first time since 2011, the Union, who are already locked into a first-round road match, could rest players Sunday in the season finale against the New York Red Bulls (15-9-9). But that doesn’t mean the Union (11-13-9) will be mailing it in.

Here are five things to know.

1. Playoff recovery
The Union had hope that last Sunday’s home match against mathematically eliminated Orlando City SC would work as a slump buster, breaking the club’s five-game winless run. 

Instead, with a 2-0 loss, it just extended the Union’s slump to six.

“We had a good meeting with the group, we talked a lot about accountability,” Union manager Jim Curtin said. “Everybody does have to look in the mirror.”

With their last win coming in late August, the Union seem fresh out of ideas. Passing up the ripe opportunity to gain confidence against Orlando City, the club must now host the best team in the Eastern Conference as a pre-playoff test.

“We shot ourselves in the foot in a big spot and we came up a little short,” said Curtin, whose club flubbed an outside chance to host a first-round game and will be on the road regardless of Sunday’s outcome. “It’s the past, though. We have to look forward to the challenge that Red Bulls will present. They are the perfect team to play in terms of a tuneup, to get up to speed with the tempo of a playoff game. It’ll be good for our guys, we’ll use that to get prepared.”

2. Refreshing the lineup
Because Sunday’s match comes just days before the Union’s midweek postseason game, Curtin could look to rest some starters against the Red Bulls, especially the injured ones.

“There are discussions,” he said. “You have to do what’s best. Maybe it’s a new face, a change or a tweak. We won’t change our formation, we won’t change the style that we play but maybe there’s a new body that comes out on the field and gives us a little bit of a lift.”

But Curtin’s team doesn’t just need a lift, it needs healthy bodies. C.J. Sapong suffered a concussion against Orlando City and will likely sit out Saturday. If he does, Charlie Davies could see a chunk of playing time. Davies has only played 81 minutes in eight games since being acquired by the Union in August.

Tranquillo Barnetta and Chris Pontius are also banged up with lower-body ailments.

“Charlie’s been a little bit sharper each day in training,” Curtin said. “It’s tough to forget that he as recently as a month and a half ago was beating cancer so, the sharpness and the fitness is starting to come back. He wants to start, he wants to play, like any striker does, but we have to be smart about what makes the most sense for the team to get a result this weekend.”

3. Mighty Red Bulls
With the Red Bulls already locked into a first-round playoff bye, claiming the top seed in the East, they could float into Sunday’s match like it’s an exhibition — resting starters and providing minimal effort. 

But while riding an unbeaten streak that dates back to early July, the Red Bulls aren’t likely to pull their foot off the gas just yet.

“It’s a challenging game for us,” Curtin said. “It’ll be a high tempo, playoff atmosphere. With Red Bull already securing their bye, I envision them playing their full-strength lineup because they don’t want to rest guys for two weeks, and then you could have some rust. We expect their best.”

Though the Red Bulls want to keep things moving Sunday, the Union also want to finish the season strong. Although the match doesn’t hold the importance it could have for either club, Curtin’s team, winless since late August, is grasping for anything it can to catapult itself into the postseason with momentum. 

“We want to finish the season the right way for our fans,” Curtin said. “We want to come out with some confidence after the game.”

4. Keep an eye on …
Union: With Sapong hobbled from a concussion, Sunday’s match could put Charlie Davies’ effort on display. The forward, who has been seldom used as he regains conditioning after beating cancer earlier in the year, was acquired by the Union for this exact scenario — providing quality attacking depth.

Red Bulls: Although the match is practically meaningless for the Red Bulls, it could mean something for Bradley Wright-Phillips. The 31-year striker could claim his second golden boot in three seasons. He currently leads MLS with 23 goals — one ahead of David Villa. He has a goal and an assist against the Union this season and 11 goals in his last nine games.

5. This and that
• The Union are 0-1-1 against the Red Bulls this season but did score a win in the U.S. Open Cup round of 16.

• The result of Sunday’s match will leave the Union with one of three postseason road opponents — New York City FC, Montreal Impact and D.C. United. The match will be played the following Wednesday or Thursday.

• With a win on Sunday, the Union would match a club-high in wins with 12 — a record set in 2013.