Bill Guerin would be an influential addition for Philly.
According to Tim Panaccio, unrestricted free agent forward Bill Guerin told CSNPhilly.com that he hopes to get a tryout offer from the Philadelphia Flyers.
However, Guerin’s agent Bob Murray told the Sporting News that he’s hopeful to get a contract done rather than a tryout for his client.
Guerin, 39, was told last week by Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ray Shero that he was no longer in the Penguins plans. He earned $2 million last year with Pittsburgh.
The 6’2″, 220-pound right winger registered 21 goals and 24 assists in 78 games playing with Sidney Crosby last season. Guerin added an additional five goals and nine points in 11 playoff games.
If the Flyers sign Guerin, they would have to make room for him as they only have $877,737 in cap space according to Capgeek.com, and although the lines appear to set possesses the size, grit and leadership that the Flyers will have a tough time passing up.
Although the Flyers lines appear to be set, Guerin would be an immediate upgrade to Philadelphia’s top-nine as he could replace gritty grinder Dan Carcillo on the Flyers top line of Mike Richards and Claude Giroux.
While that’s no disrespect to Carcillo, Guerin would be a substantial addition both on and off the ice for the Orange ‘n’ Black. The 17-year veteran was part of the Pens’ 2008-09 Stanley Cup team, and won the Cup with the New Jersey Devils in 1995.
For one, Guerin can pass lot of knowledge onto the young players on the roster like James van Riemsdyk, and has proven to be a winner in this league even at an elder age.
He scored 45 points last year with the Penguins, and while it’s mostly because he was playing alongside Sidney Crosby, the game’s best player, Guerin has to be doing something right at the age of 39. You don’t score 21 goals if you don’t have anything left.
Should Guerin join the Flyers, it will push guys like Darroll Powe, Jody Shelley and Carcillo to really prove their worth to Peter Laviolette in training camp when the Flyers open in 14 days.
Not only will Guerin bring veteran leadership and the ability to win, he’ll bring another big body that can man the crease like Mike Knuble did a couple years ago. That was one crucial thing missing from the Flyers last year, someone who could create havoc in front of the goalie and score the dirty goals.
The Flyers power play finished last season third best in the NHL with a 21.4% success rate, and adding Guerin would only improve those numbers, especially with Chris Pronger manning the point.
Guerin has 1,263 career games under his belt, and has accumulated 856 points (429 G, 427 A) while playing for New Jersey, Edmonton, Boston, Dallas, San Jose, St. Louis, New York Islanders and Pittsburgh.
He would like to play one more year in the NHL, and a few believe he wants to play for the Flyers.
The question is can the Flyers fit him into their plans?
A scenario that could work is sending Powe to the American Hockey League, and inking Guerin to a $1-million contract.
Either way, we’ll find out whether Guerin will be suiting up in the Orange ‘n’ Black in the next couple weeks leading up to the start of camp.