May 11: The Flyers have made it official, hiring Jones and removing Briere’s interim tag.
May 10: Sportsnet is reporting that the Philadelphia Flyers are set to name Keith Jones as President of Hockey Operations. Elliotte Friedman first broke the news this evening that will see the long-time broadcaster Jones move from the studio to the boardroom. Earlier today Frank Seravalli had reported that the Flyers were down to two options: Ed Olczyk and Keith Jones, with the Flyers electing to go with the latter over the former.
The Flyers are expected to make a formal announcement on Thursday at which time they will also drop the interim tag from Daniel Briere’s general manager position. Jones and Briere will take over from Chuck Fletcher who was fired March 10 as the Flyers were on the cusp of missing the playoffs for a third consecutive season.
Jones has been in broadcasting booth or between the benches since 2005 and is currently employed by the NHL on TNT as well as local Philadelphia broadcasts on NBC Sports Philadelphia. He is also a former Flyers player having been with the team for parts of three seasons from 1998-2001.
Jones, Briere, and company have a tall task in front of them. As mentioned earlier the Flyers haven’t made the playoffs in three seasons and have won just a single playoff round in the last 11 years. It’ll be interesting to see the path the Flyers go down and whether Jones and his management group elect to embrace the rebuild that the Flyers have desperately needed for the past half decade. The Flyers don’t have a particularly good prospect pool and haven’t been able to cash in on any of their pending free agents at the last two NHL trade deadlines. Their NHL roster is saddled with several bad contracts, and they are lacking in top end talent. If they do go for a rebuild, it will be long and painful and something that the Flyers organization haven’t had the stomach to do for quite some time.