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Johnny Gaudreau autographs Flyers fan’s ‘Fire Chuck Fletcher’ sign

Simply poetic.

Dallas Stars v Calgary Flames - Game Seven Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images

South Jersey native and new Columbus Blue Jackets forward Johnny Gaudreau was in Voorhees over the weekend playing in the Checking for Charity hockey game, and something pretty amazing happened.

A Flyers fan brought a sign reading “Fire Chuck Fletcher,” and not only did Gaudreau see it, but he signed it as well.

Flyers fans have been in a state of existential dread since the club failed to sign Gaudreau when the free agent signing period opened in July. After Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher promised an “aggressive retool” ahead of the offseason, fans and analysts alike expected the team to make a significant push to sign Gaudreau, who is fresh off a 40-goal, 115-point campaign.

However, the Flyers didn’t even extend an offer to the All-Star winger, who reportedly wanted to sign with the Orange and Black. Instead, they signed 31-year-old fourth-liner Nicolas Deslauriers, 32-year-old goalie Troy Grosenick (who has just four career NHL appearances under his belt) and brought back defensemen Justin Braun and Kevin Connauton.

Minus the additions of Deslauriers and troubled defenseman Tony DeAngelo, who they acquired from the Carolina Hurricanes during the draft, the Flyers’ lineup will remain nearly identical to the team that finished the 2021-22 season with the fourth-fewest points in the entire NHL.

Some aggressive retool, eh?

Flyers fans have every right to be irate about the direction of the team, and the fact that there’s an existing “Fire Chuck Fletcher” sign autographed by Gaudreau himself? The comedy writes itself.