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Philadelphia targets Tim Thomas

Philly believes in Bobrovsky, but also thinks Boston could deal top keeper

Originally Published: May 29, 2011
By Jay Greenberg | Special to ESPN Insider

The Philadelphia Flyers couldn't beat Tim Thomas. Now, they want him to join them.

After the Boston Bruins' sweep, Flyers chairman Ed Snider looked into television cameras and vowed a playoff in which his team had to make five in-game goaltending changes during 11 contests wouldn't happen again. But the Flyers most want a two-year goalie, not a four- or five-year goalie like top free agent Ilya Bryzgalov, because they believe in 22-year-old Sergei Bobrovsky. So Thomas, 37, who set the NHL record for save percentage in a season in 2010-11 and has Boston in the Stanley Cup finals, would be perfect for Philadelphia if Boston decides to move him -- a good possibility even if the Bruins win the Cup.

With 24-year-old Tuukka Rask in the wings, and his bargain $1.25 million salary set to expire in July 2012 when he becomes a restricted free agent, Boston began looking to shop Thomas last summer. Thomas will make $5 million next season and $3 million in 2012-13, before becoming a 39-year-old free agent.

He was offered to Philadelphia for Jeff Carter, a deal the Flyers rejected -- and would again, even though that still would leave them having to clear approximately $5 million in cap space elsewhere to make room for a top goalie.

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