Looks like the old dog isn’t ready to roll over just yet.
After making it known he had inclinations toward retirement during last season’s run in Philly, Kimmo Timonen, the steadiest defender the Flyers have had the last several seasons and multiple time All Star had a decided change of heart. New Flyers GM Ron Hextall and Timonen agreed to a 1 year deal, the details of which have not been publicly disclosed as of yet.
Most of the rumors concerning whether or not Timonen would remain a Flyer stemmed from the fact that his family is supposedly happy here, and he has established roots for them in the city for quite a while now. The common speculation was that he would hold true to his desire to hang them up after last year, and it was a constant story line throughout the season, including the Olympics, where he and fellow Fin Teemu Selanne, who did retire after this season, were going through something of a farewell tour. Kimmo has always provided a solid two way skill set to the blueline, but there are concerns that he may have lost a step or two due to his advancing age, having just turned 39 in March.
Despite the worry that Kimmo’s speed may not be up to par, there is a bright side to the deal. For starters, Kimmo has an opportunity to impart knowledge onto the up and coming Flyers defensive prospects in future blueliners Shayne Gostisbehere, Samuel Morin, and potentially Robert Hagg as well. He also shouldn’t start on the first pairing, which means less minutes on those legs. This means a fresher, healthier Timonen when he hits the ice. He did have a few injury issues last season, but still missed minimal time regardless.
All in all as long as the Flyers didn’t throw another mountain of cash at Kimmo, this could be a quality resigning for the Flyers, and if anything will give the club a presence to spread knowledge towards the youngsters even more, akin to what Daniel Briere was doing before he left the team.