CSN Philly's Tim Panaccio reports the Coyotes offered defenseman Keith Yandle to the Flyers hours before the 2012 NHL Draft but Paul Holmgren turned them down. Panaccio claims it was "the same deal as what Toronto got" which means it would have been James van Riemsdyk for Yandle straight-up. We all know the Flyers flipped van Riemsdyk to Toronto for Luke Schenn.
There are a lot of moving parts here and hindsight is screaming the Flyers made the wrong decision. But there are a few things I can think of that might explain why the Flyers might've went the Schenn route over the Yandle route. Obviously there was some attraction of pairing Brayden Schenn with his brother, Luke.
Yandle, who was turning 26 a few months after the draft, just finished the first year of a five-year, $26.25 million deal ($5.25 million cap hit). Remember the timing here. This all took place weeks before the Flyers reportedly made three separate $100 million offers to defensemen Ryan Suter and Shea Weber along with winger Zach Parise. They needed the cap space and Schenn only carried a $3.6 million hit.
Unfortunately, they struck out on all three and left a major void in their defense for a puck-moving defenseman. Yandle would have fit perfectly there but let's not forget, although Yandle is technically a "defenseman," he isn't the strongest defensive player on the blue line. His offense is fantastic on the backend but he is no Suter or Weber, who are all-world talents at both ends of the ice.
You can see, maybe, why the Flyers went with the cheaper Schenn over Yandle. Looking at the team now, the deal they shelled out to Mark Streit in June, and the play of Luke Schenn, Yandle would've been ideal. T
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