Ilya Bryzgalov

Snider fully supports Holmgren’s decision to buy out Bryzgalov


What role Flyers owner Ed Snider played in the decision to sign goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov to nine-year, $51 million deal in the first place is open to debate. However, it was Flyers GM Paul Holmgren’s decision to buy out Bryzgalov — and he’s backing that call.

“I fully support Paul Holmgren in his decision to use our final compliance buyout for Ilya Bryzgalov,” Snider said, according to the Philadelphia Daily News. “It was a very difficult decision from a financial standpoint, but if Bryz remained a Flyer, the dollars would be far greater in a shorter timeframe.

“We now have cap space, which allows us to improve our team. In the meantime, Bryz can try to find a situation where he can achieve true happiness.”

Holmgren said he explained his reasoning to Snider and the conversation went “okay.”

As seems to often be the case with Bryzgalov, this situation has been a dramatic one. Bryzgalov initially congratulated the media following his buyout, according to Courier-Post writer Randy Miller

He later issued a statement thanking Snider and those who supported him “through some very dark days and difficult situations.”

After that, his agent, Ritch Winter slammed the Flyers’ defensive system.


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Bryzgalov’s agent rips Philly’s defensive system


Earlier today, Ilya Bryzgalov released a statement through his agent, Ritch Winter, thanking Philadelphia Flyers owner Ed Snider for “the faith he showed in me when he committed to the long term contract that has secured my family’s financial future and acknowledging his passion for the game of hockey.”

The statement set a largely convivial tone after the Flyers announced they would use a compliance buyout on Bryzgalov.

However, we’re not sure we’d say the same about Winter’s tone in a radio interview he just had with Edmonton’s 630 CHED.

As for Bryzgalov’s future, Winter said the Oilers are a team that his client — now free to sign with any of the other 29 teams in the NHL — would consider joining.

Whether there’s any interest on Edmonton’s end — new general manager Craig MacTavish has said he’d like to add another goaltender to push starter Devan Dubnyk — remains to be seen.

Bryzgalov releases statement, thanks those who helped him ‘through some very dark days’

Ilya Bryzgalov

Via CSN Philly, a statement from former Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov, released through his agent Ritch Winter:

“As my family and I move forward to meet the new challenges ahead, I could not leave Philadelphia without publicly thanking Mr. Snider for the faith he showed in me when he committed to the long term contract that has secured my family’s financial future and acknowledging his passion for the game of hockey. Jeniya and I really appreciate his faith in me and what he has done for our family. Mr. Snider has an amazing energy for the deals he does and for winning. Hockey fans in this area should consider themselves lucky to have the team they cheer for led by a man who is as passionate about winning and doing whatever it takes to win as Flyers’ fans are. Getting to know Mr. Snider, has been a great experience. To see his passion for this game has been inspiring.

“I am grateful for teammates, to management and fans for the support I felt from so many of them through some very dark days and difficult situations. I have made many friends here – on the team, in the organization, among the media and throughout the community. Don’t ever think that I didn’t appreciate the kind comments of support made in the media by teammates and management and in private by so many very nice people I met on the streets of Philadelphia and in the surrounding area.

“I appreciate this experience more than many of you will know. I will learn from it. I have always said that a heavy sword makes a very strong arm. I intend to take this experience with me to my new team, to help me be stronger – a better player and, hopefully, a better person. At the end of the day, that is the challenge we all need to wrestle with.

“I look forward to the bright future ahead, but will never forget my time with the Philadelphia Flyers. For this time and this experience, I am grateful. “

Winter added (in all-caps, no less):



Bye-bye Bryzgalov: Flyers will use compliance buyout

Holmgren: ‘Costly mistake’ resulted in Bryzgalov buyout, largest in NHL history

Briere: Goalies are ‘different’ and Bryzgalov was no exception