With the league's salary cap scheduled to go down from $70.2 million to $64.3 million next season, the team will need to shed a considerable amount of cap dollars before then. With Briere entering the seventh year of an eight-year, $52 million contract that carries an annual average value of $6.5 million against the cap next season, it's not hard to understand why he is believed to be a top candidate.
While the 35-year-old forward understands the situation, he still hopes he can remain with the Flyers beyond this season, via CSN Philly:
"I've said it all along: My family's here, my kids are here. This is my first choice, this is where I want to be. But I understand it's a business, so we'll see happens with that. My first goal is to be here."
In 34 games this season, Briere compiled six goals and 10 assists for 16 points.
As those numbers would suggest, the forward's production has declined over the years. In addition, he has sustained concussions in two consecutive seasons. Considering his reputation as a defensive liability, as well as his diminishing numbers, it appears as though Philadelphia may no longer be a fit for Briere.
With young players such as Brayden Schenn, Jakub Voracek, Sean Couturier and Wayne Simmonds vying for ice time, it becomes unclear where Briere fits in the Flyers' lineup. While his presence is apparently something the players on the team enjoy, it appears the organization's hands are tied in a business sense.
Unless some other course of action is taken, whether it be with goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov or via trade, it seems that a compliance buyout of Briere would help alleviate some of the team's cap concerns.