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Fan poll in favor of firing Paul Holmgren ‘doesn’t mean anything’ to Flyers

Oct 21, 2013, 4:08 PM EDT

Paul Holmgren AP

Do you think Paul Holmgren should be relieved of his duties as general manager of the Flyers? Do ya? Well, guess what—the Flyers don’t care. According to Peter Luukko, president of Comcast-Spectacor, that is the organization’s official opinion of a poll where nearly 93 percent of the 4,400 respondents voted yes for Holmgren’s dismissal.

Luukko was pressed about the poll results by Flyers beat writer Sam Carchidi as part of a story on Holmgren’s job status in Sunday’s edition of the Inquirer. It would seem the front office isn’t placing much stock in public opinion these days based on this statement.

“When things aren’t going well, the timing of the poll is what directly relates to the answers,” Luukko said the other day. “To us, it doesn’t mean anything.”

There’s no doubt the timing directly relates to the answers. The timing is the Flyers are off to a 1-7-0 start after missing the playoffs last season. And let’s be real, the Flyers can’t make decisions about the general manager based purely on the whim of the fans.

Perhaps it’s only the choice of words that was poor. Admitting the opinion of the fans “doesn’t mean anything” when the team is 1-7 and hasn’t won a Stanley Cup in going on 39 years might not be the best answer to appease paying customers who are becoming increasingly disenfranchised with the moves in recent years—and more importantly, the results.

Regardless, the organization is adamant about sticking with Holmgren, but you have to wonder for how much longer with a recent resume that reads like this (per Carchidi):

Holmgren is the one who gave the crazy contract to Ilya Bryzgalov (nine years, $51 million). The Flyers ate the final seven years of the deal, costing the franchise $23 million.

Holmgren is the one who traded away last season’s Vezina-winning goalie, Sergei Bobrovsky – though, from here, more blame has to go to Laviolette for the way he lost confidence in him in the 2011 playoffs, causing a panic signing of Bryzgalov.

Holmgren is the one who has assembled an offensively inept team, while traded-away players such as Jeff Carter, Joffrey Lupul, James van Riemsdyk, and Mike Richards are flourishing around the league. And he’s the one whose slow, aging defense is the highest-paid in the NHL, thanks to some extremely questionable contracts he handed out. (See Kimmo Timonen’s $6 million extension.)

A few weeks back, team owner Ed Snider bristled at the idea the franchise needs to change their philosophy. Maybe they could just overhaul the public relations department for starters?

>> Slumping Flyers put Holmgren on hot seat [Inq]

  1. gq - Oct 21, 2013 at 4:58 PM

    …my question is: Was it Homer who gave Bryz the contract or was it Snider who forced it to happen, so therefore, internally, Homer isn’t on the hook for that

  2. BenE. - Oct 21, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    Good. Why should it? The first day our teams start listening to fan opinions is the first day of the era where we never win another championship again.

    • what - Oct 21, 2013 at 7:03 PM

      This once proud sports city has 1 title in 30 years, how much worse can it get?

    • Dan C. - Oct 21, 2013 at 7:21 PM

      I legitimately cannot tell if you are being sarcastic or not

      • BenE. - Oct 22, 2013 at 9:50 AM

        Not at all, though I do see how it could read that way.

    • mike - Oct 21, 2013 at 7:22 PM

      Because the cheapest ticket at a Flyers game is $81.

      And it’s a garbage product they are putting on the ice right now.

      And 39 years.

    • Jay D - Oct 22, 2013 at 12:07 PM


      We wanted Ricky Williams!

  3. Jason Radcliff. - Oct 21, 2013 at 7:44 PM

    He shouldn’t make the decision based on what the fans think, he should make it off the fact that they have one win three weeks into the season and they’re not the Astros with a grand plan, they just have a GM who has history of poor/wrong decisions. The tunnel isn’t the issue, the issue that there currently doesn’t appear to be a light at the end of it.

  4. Chris - Oct 21, 2013 at 10:29 PM

    of course they’re gonna say that…

    why would they agree to fan sentiment?

    cause right now the majority fan sentiment is that the Flyers would be better off if Ed Snider was dead….

  5. Lol - Oct 22, 2013 at 9:15 AM

    The day anybody listens to users is the day society crumbles.

  6. PJ - Oct 22, 2013 at 3:23 PM

    The day philly sports teams listen to fans they should just close up shop and dismantle the teams , listen to the callers on sports radio for proof.

  7. Dave - Nov 8, 2013 at 12:34 PM

    My opinion is the Flyers Brass should let Holmgren go and put Ron Hextall in the GM position with Bob Clarke as his advisor


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