This move comes on the heels of learning that Kimmo Timonen will be out indefinitely due to blood clots in his leg and lungs. With Timonen's immediate future up in the air, Flyers general manager Ron Hextall responded quickly with this move. The former New York Ranger and Nashville Predator will have a chance to re-ignite his once-promising career with the Flyers.
The 24-year-old Del Zotto is an offensive defenseman and a good skater. He can move the puck easily up the ice, and he possesses great speed. It's really a low-risk, high-reward move for the Flyers, and it's one that could pay off for them this year. He may be young, but he has plenty of experience playing in high intensity situations and the playoffs.
Given the difficult situation that presented itself earlier with Kimmo Timonen's health, there wasn't a better move for Hextall to make. Sure, there were other, veteran options out there, but none of them have the upside of Del Zotto. The great thing about this contract is that if it doesn't work out and Del Zotto becomes a problem in the locker room, then he won't play, and Craig Berube will make sure of that. The Flyers have a number of high quality defensive prospects who will see the ice this year, so while the Flyers don't have a "great" defenseman, they have a stable of young, quality defenseman.
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Tags: Hockey, Kimmo Timonen, Michael Del Zotto, NHL, Philadelphia, Philadelphia Flyers, Ron Hextall