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Flyers fire head coach Berube; reportedly eyeing Babcock, McLellan, Julien

Bill Streicher / Reuters

The Philadelphia Flyers have fired head coach Craig Berube.

Berube amassed a record of 75-58-28 in 161 games as head coach. The dismissal comes as no surprise after the Flyers, who had one of the highest payrolls in the league, missed the postseason.

General manager Ron Hextall said Berube failed to take the Flyers to the next level.

"I wanted to make the right decision. I put all the facts together, but in the end, you go with your gut," Hextall said. "You're looking for the coach who fits your team. In the end, we're looking for the guy to take the group to another level.

"Is the coach the right coach for your team now? If the answer is no, you have to move on. That's what we did here. I would like to have a guy in place by the draft. That's the goal ... But we're going to do our due diligence.

"Craig Berube is a good friend of mine; he's a terrific man. But professionally, I have an obligation to do what I think is best."

The rest of the coaching staff is still employed for now, Tim Panaccio of CSN Philly reports.

A trio of employed coaches in other organizations are reportedly on the Flyers' radar. According to Panaccio:

A league source said the Flyers had their eye on three current NHL coaches who could be free in the weeks ahead: Detroit’s Mike Babcock, whose contract is expiring, Boston’s Claude Julien and San Jose’s Todd McLellan. 

Babcock will be the most sought after coaching free agent when his deal expires at season's end, but his Detroit Red Wings are alive and well in the playoffs.

Julien remains head coach of the Boston Bruins for the time being, in the aftermath of Peter Chiarelli's dismissal.

McLellan's future as head coach of the San Jose Sharks could be determined before he joins the Canadian national team at the world championship later this month.

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