Daniel Brière Accuses Avalanche Of Hiding Injury To Player Before Major Trade

Graham Montgomery
March 19, 2024  (5:55 PM)

Philadelphia Flyers general manager Danny Briere addressing the media after the trade deadline
Photo credit: NHL

A new development in the trade deadline surprisingly came out today regarding the Avalanche and Flyers. This new drama could have implications for the Avs going forward.

Avalanche Acquire Walker In Trade With Flyers

One of the more surprising moves of the trade deadline came when the Flyers traded defenseman Sean Walker to the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for a 1st round draft pick and center Ryan Johansen.
The Flyers were known to be shopping Walker, so his trade was not surprising in itself. The fact that Ryan Johansen was included was odd though necessary for the Avs to remain cap compliant. However, his inclusion now may have long-term consequences for the team.

Flyers Reportedly Unaware Of Johansen Injury Prior To Trade At Deadline

Apparently, Johansen has been dealing with an ongoing back injury this season. The Flyers were not made aware of this prior to the trade according to sources within the organization.
Nice find by @ByJonBailey: #LetsGoFlyers GM Danny Briere spoke to PHN about the confusing situation of Ryan Johansen, including his transactions of being sent down but then back on the NHL roster and injury surprise. Read more on @TheHockeyNews.⤵️
This is particularly damaging for the Avalanche as they would have been required to report the injury prior to the deal going through. Furthermore, Johansen should have had to pass a physical before the trade was completed. For the Flyers, this meant that they could not send him to the AHL as they had planned. Players that are injured are not eligible to be waived and sent to the American Hockey League.
According to Kurz, the Flyers were not aware of any injury before the trade happened. They were informed after Johansen was placed on waivers. Now, the time between the trade and waivers wasn't very long, but it is worth noting that it wasn't a known thing when the trade happened. Players typically need to pass physicals when traded to a new team.
This means that the Flyers were stuck with the entirety of Johansen's 4 million dollar cap hit at the deadline, a fact that limited what the team could do afterwards. As such, the Avalanche could potentially face a punishment in the form of a cap penalty or draft pick loss due to the team subverting the rules at the trade deadline.