At least two reports out of Philadelphia today more than suggest the Islanders discussed Ruslan Fedotenko with the Flyers. They make it sound like a fact of life. For example, Chuck Gormley of the Camden Courier-Post had this:
"(Holmgren) went fishing for Islanders forward Ruslan Fedotenko, but passed on the bait it would take to get him, a first-round pick.
There's a few things wrong with this, none of it the fault of Chuck or the other Flyers reporters. They're just passing along information given to them.
But it is more than a bit distasteful that one organization would appear to be leaking information about another team's player, especially since the player - in this case, Tank - was not moved.
I want to say that there's no way Flyers GM Paul Holmgren would go there. I've known Paul for a while, going back to my days as a Flyers intern, and he has way too much class for that. Garth Snow and Holmgren are friends and worked well on two trades last year: Zhitnik for the Fantastic IVth and a third, York for Robitaille and a fifth.
Of course, I cannot confirm whether there were substantial discussions of a deal at all. I wasn't in the room. I will say I kind of doubt it.
The subject is important to me because there has been some disappointment on the Islandermania message board over Snow allegedly "asking for too much" from the Flyers, "overvaluing the player" and "not getting a second-round pick" for the potential UFA.
I don't know. Let's just say it's a deal that could have been made. Here are the current standings:
Flyers: 69 points
Islanders: 67 points
I'm curious: as Islander fans, would you be okay with trading a top-9 forward - playing his best hockey of the season - to a rival team three hours away that you're battling neck-and-neck with for a playoff berth? For a second round pick?
What would that say about your team? What would that say to your team?
As someone who has spent some time in Philadelphia, I can tell you if the Flyers traded...oh let's say Mike Knuble...to the NYI for a second round pick while fighting us for the Stanley Cup playoffs, there would be blood.