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Flyers GM Fletcher will 'be very aggressive' this offseason

Bruce Bennett / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Ahead of his first full season as general manager of the Philadelphia Flyers, Chuck Fletcher is looking to put his stamp on the team.

Fletcher was hired Dec. 3 to replace Ron Hextall and the 52-year-old is determined to explore the market this offseason.

"I think we're going to be very aggressive in the trade and free-agent markets in the sense of looking into every possible situation that can help us," Fletcher said, according to's Adam Kimelman.

The Flyers missed the playoffs by 16 points this season, and Fletcher understands the team must improve in all areas. Philadelphia finished 18th in goals for, 29th in goals against, and 28th in save percentage.

"We need help everywhere. We need help on defense, at center, and on the wing," Fletcher said. "And obviously, we need another goaltender, at least, if not two."

Carter Hart emerged as the Flyers' No. 1 netminder Dec. 18, compiling a 16-13-1 record with a .917 save percentage the rest of the way. The rookie still has two years remaining on his entry-level deal, but there's no guarantee he'll get the starting nod come opening night.

"In the short term, can he be our No. 1 goalie coming out of camp next year? He certainly could be. I don't mean this as a threat, but like everybody else, he's going to have to earn that. It's a tough league for 20- and 21-year-old kids.

"We'll let his play dictate it and we'll hopefully have some other good options in goal so we have great depth, and that's the way we want to approach it."

Alex Lyon is the only other Flyers netminder currently under contract for next season, with Cam Talbot, Michael Neuvirth, and Brian Elliott all scheduled to become unrestricted free agents July 1.

The Flyers have $33.4 million in projected cap space, but Fletcher faces some in-house business to take care of as well, with young forwards Ryan Hartman, Travis Konecny, and Scott Laughton, along with defensemen Travis Sanheim and Ivan Provorov, all set for new deals as restricted free agents.

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