Image courtesy of Amy Irvin
A week after the team's exit in the opening round of the postseason, the Philadelphia Flyers announced today that Paul Holmgren will become the team's President and Ron Hextall will become the team's new General Manager. It will mark the first time in his career that Holmgren will be the President of a franchise, as well as the first time Hextall will be the GM of an NHL club.
Holmgren had spent the last seven full seasons and part of an eighth as the Flyers' GM, as he replaced Bobby Clarke early in the 2006-2007 campaign. In that time, the Flyers made the playoffs six times, won a playoff series in four of those seasons, reached the Eastern Conference Finals once, and reached the Stanley Cup Finals in 2010. Regardless of his positive or negative transactions, the deals that will always come to mind when fans think of Holmgren will be the departures of Mike Richards and Jeff Carter in June of 2011.
As for Hextall, he spent the 2013-2014 campaign as an Assistant GM to Holmgren. Prior to this past year, Hextall spent seven seasons in the Los Angeles Kings' organization. The former Flyer goaltender served as the Assistant GM and VP of Hockey Operations for the Kings, as well as the GM of the Manchester Monarchs, the Kings' AHL affiliate. Hextall previously worked for the Flyers' organization as a scout from 1999-2002, while he then became the Director of Player Personnel from 2002-2006.
Last week, Ed Snider stated that Hextall would become the team's next GM, but that it wouldn't happen tomorrow. It wasn't the next day, but it was only a few days later that Hextall was named the club's new GM. The news most likely comes due to the fact Hextall was going to be a popular choice to replace another team's vacancy if the Flyers weren't willing to promote Hextall quickly. The trio of Snider, Holmgren, and Hextall may have all said that the plan was just for Hextall to wait until he was promoted to GM, but with Holmgren not necessarily giving a timeline as to when that would happen next week, Hextall could have easily started talking to other clubs and left the organization for a different GM position.
A press conference for the news will be held at 11:30 this morning.