Image c/o 38 Photography
Let’s run through a list of events surrounding Vincent Lecavalier.
- Lecavalier signs in Philadelphia upon getting bought out by the Tampa Bay Lightning in part because of Peter Laviolette
- Paul Holmgren signs him to his standard issue absurd contract offer, including a no movement clause
- Lecavalier performs well at first, gets injured and returns to a team in turmoil with a new coach
- He underperforms
- The Flyers shuffle management around to include Ron Hextall, a General Manager with a focus on building for the future
- Lecavalier’s agent, Kent Hughes, is given permission to find another team interested in taking on the former All-Star center in trade
- Hughes apparently fails to find any takes
- Vinny continues to underperform
- He becomes a healthy scratch for the first time in his life
- He expresses displeasure with the situation and admits that he came to the team to play under Laviolette
- Among other things, Lecavalier also mentions the possibility of retiring in the near future
- His name starts appearing in trade rumors
- The likelihood that Lecavalier might be traded is squashed on multiple occasions by reports who mention the Flyers would have to eat a significant portion of his contract and offer more in trade with little more than another bad contract in return
- People begin questioning why he is continuing to be scratched while Umberger plays (it’s because Umberger is a winger and Vinny is one of 400 centers on the Flyers roster)
- Dave Isaac reports that there are still no takers for Levavalier
- Ron Hextall states that Ryan White, another Flyers’ center, is closer to returning
- Tim Panaccio announces on Twitter that Lecavalier fails to report to practice
- Sam Carchidi follows up on this news by tying it to Vinny’s unhappiness and his streak of being scratched for five straight games
So, what happens next? Will Lecavalier be traded? Might he consider retiring? Does the CBA allow for the Flyers to terminate Lecavalier’s contract if he fails to report to the team? Why isn’t Edmonton, a team desperate for veteran leadership and depth down the middle, interested in him? Is it just a maintenance day and everyone is overreacting?
Anything is possible at this point. No matter where things currently stand, the Flyers will continue to get as creative as possible to get Lecavalier off the books. The likelihood of a trade happen will not increase until the trade deadline approaches, though.