It's pretty simple, the more skill we add up front the less pressure there is on Giroux and other teams will have to be equally concerned about newer guys like Konecny and Lindblom and Patrick, so they can't just key in on shutting down Giroux. We will have more offense over 3 lines, instead of just one line.I think he will have more room to operate and I like having a physical guy like Simmons on his wing to open up more space for G.
Giroux's ability to rebound is huge. If he can't, and if the Flyers aren't in hunt for a playoff spot this upcoming season, I could see Hextall looking really hard at breaking up the big three of Giroux, Voracek and Simmonds.
Giroux would be the most difficult to move, simply because of the combination of his decline in production, the contract hit and his NMC. Voracek has the same cap hit, which is a hurdle, but he's younger and still somewhat dynamic. At least by the eye test, Voracek is still a similar player to what he has been in the past. Simmonds would be the easiest(in terms of interest and return) to deal. He's got 2 years left on a steal of a contract and should have at least 3-4 good years left. If Simmonds were to hit the market, Hextall could easily get a huge haul for him.
I'm not advocating trades here, either. Just talking frankly. This core wasn't assembled by Hextall, and it's won one playoff round since 2012. It hasn't had much of a supporting cast, but They're going to need bounce back years from Giroux and Voracek.
I remember discussions around here about an overpaid McDud and folks saying it really didn't matter so much cause we don't need the cap space at present. I'm not sure I agree with that statement for McDud, but I would agree with that for Giroux.
As mentioned above, his potential for a rebound season and return to 70-80 pt form is very possible. Was he playing injured last year? Very possible. Is the media and leadership chatter getting to him? It has bothered many an NHL captain before. He'd be in good company. Is he capable of figuring that stuff out, healing up, and bouncing back? Absolutely.
Moreover, as @scoopyten mentioned, he is currently a very difficult player to move. I would add though, he's not only difficult due to things like cap hit and production, he's also difficult because he remains the team's scoring engine at the moment, even in his down years. Moving Giroux at this time would very likely mean a considerable step back in overall scoring ability and flexibility for the team. That would be painful to watch, and I'm really not sure it would be to our benefit either. The return would have to be amazing, and I'm just not sure that's in the cards right now.
This is an interesting year for Giroux from my perspective. Does he rebound or do we find out his tank is starting to run on empty and he becomes nothing more than a power play specialist? Something tells me he will rebound back to a 60-70 point player - still grossly overpaid in my opinion. But, I also think it could easily be a 45-50 point year...
My concern still lies with his 5v5 play. For all the crap that TK took last year from Hak Giroux was simply bad/lazy on the defensive side of the puck. Maybe he was hurt but there were too many times he just looked gassed on the back-check. The one knock I have always had is that G tends to get a little too fancy with the puck and is more than not looking to make the perfect pass.
My hope is that with the influx of youth G also gets re-energized. I feel like he has taken the majority of the beating the past few years while this team was in limbo - and some of it for good reason. He seems to be the type of guy that internalizes things and holds onto things too much. I hope he figures out how to let all the other BS go and just play hockey - have fun.
Last, it is imperative that G comes out of the gate in full swing. This team can ill-afford another horrendous start by the captain and he simply needs to step up his game. If not, the Flyers really need to figure some things out for the future. Having two players that are making 8+ million and not getting the return is a tough situation for Hextall - but again, Hextall created the issue when he signed Jake. Jake and G both need to be "stars" for this Team to take the next step. Whether they both return to form is anyone's guess.
Fingers are crossed...
I think Giroux has a 70 to 80 point season this year. The hip and abdomen surgery took a lot out of him last year and you know he was hurting the previous year too. I also look at guys who've had the same surgery and their numbers were bad in the season immediately following the surgery. A year removed from the surgery, guys were playing lights out (Ryan Getzlaf is the one guy who really suffered with this sort of injury). This isn't just a surgery that once it's done and once you've healed up, you're ready. That just means the surgery itself has healed. Giroux was never in game shape and the Flyers (looking at Jim McCrossin) should have NEVER let Giroux set foot on the ice until his hip and abdomen were 100% back in range and motion, not just 100% healed from the surgery. That's why I hope they take their time with Nolan Patrick. Get that abdomen/hernia healthy and looked after and ensure he's got his full range of motion back with no pain before he sets foot on the ice.