Defenseman Bryan Berard to Try Out for Flyers

Defenseman Bryan Berard, the number one overall draft pick in 1995 and Rookie of the Year in 1997, will attend Flyers training camp this season in the hopes of winning a job on the Flyers’ blue line.  Berard severely injured his right eye in 2000 when playing for Toronto, taking an errant stick and losing almost all of his sight in that eye.  He amazingly came back from what was thought to be a career-ending injury, enduring seven eye operations and  returning an insurance settlement of over $6 million.  Berard has also had back surgery twice after returning to hockey.  Playing with the Islanders last season, he scored five goals and had 17 assists in 54 games. 

The Flyers will have 21 defensemen when training camp opens in September.  That Berard has been granted a tryout along with this high number of blueliners makes me think that GM Paul Holmgren may be worried that the off-season additions to their defense may not be adequate.  They made no move for an offensive defenseman in the free agent market, so they may be hoping that Berard will be able to fill this void.  One must wonder, however, if the 31 year-old Berard will be the answer or if he’ll end up with the Phantoms as an emergency call-up.

One Response to “Defenseman Bryan Berard to Try Out for Flyers”

  1. I absolutely agree with your assessment of Holmgren’s worry. Berard is jist the latest in several quasi-desperate moves to secure a very insecure blue line.

    Holmgren worked wonders with the team last year. I trust that he’ll try to do something before the bulk of the season hits or even at the trade deadline because the present assembly of D-men will not be adequate for a sustained playoff run.

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