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DON’T PANIC FLYERS FANS!!

In Philadelphia Flyers on February 13, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Flyers fans lets stress one thing as we suffer through the past month – DON’T PANIC. Easier said than done since the team has gotten 4 wins plus a shootout win and 6 loses plus 3 more shootout loses since January 14. That’s a total of 28 possible points. The Flyers have only earned only 12. The goaltending continues to be erratic. Injuries are still a major problem and there seems to be some frustration mounting among the players, Kimmo Timonen.

We all have to admit that the last month has produced some ugly games including big losses to the Rangers twice, the Devils and the Islanders. A big problem is falling behind early and having to play catch-up. This team just doesn’t seem to have that kind of firepower at even strength and seems to be shorthanded a lot more than they are on the power play. So was does coach Peter Laviolette need to do? Keep the troops from imploding inside the dressing room and get players healthy for the playoffs. If we’ve learned anything in the last few years in all sports it’s about being hot at the end of the season and in to the playoffs. When the Flyers made their latest run to the Stanley Cup Finals they didn’t make the playoffs until winning a shootout in the last game of the season. We watched the St. Louis Cardinals come to town on fire down the regular season stretch and beat the heavily favored Phillies and go on to win the World Series. The Dallas Mavericks were not better than the Miami Heat the entire season but they were in the NBA Finals on the way to the championship. The same can be said for the New York Giants who had to win the last week of the season to take their 9-7 record to the playoffs only to whip everyone they played to win the Super Bowl, and going back a few years, how many times did we see Martin Brodeur stand on his head in the playoffs and carry his teams.

With that said, the team is still 2nd in the Atlantic Division, but losing ground to the Rangers, behind by 7 points right now and they are last in goals allowed in the Atlantic but they are still 3rd overall in points in the Eastern Conference. Another reason not to panic! There are 26 games left on the schedule so, in my opinion, they have 12-14 games to get it together and hit stride for the last 12-14 games heading in to the playoffs. They need to continue to get healthy. The young legs of Claude Giroux, Matt Read and Sean Couturier must stay strong as they go in to the longest season of their careers. On the opposite end Jaromir Jagr, Danny Briere and Scott Hartnell must continue to play well and get healthy. The defense must get better across the board so Timonen, Matt Carle and Braydon Coburn aren’t required to play so many minutes. Most importantly a goaltender needs to stand up and be counted. Ilya Bryzgalov is 19-11-6 with a 2.78 goals against average. Sergie Bobrovsky is 12-7-1 with a 2.90 GGA. Those stats will not win a Stanley Cup.

Remember this, as hard as it is to do, the season is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. Many coaches break the schedule in to segments and try to win those segments while shuffling players, fighting injuries, fighting team and player scoring slumps and yes, goaltender slumps. The Flyers still have plenty of time to pull it together and get hot in time for the playoffs. From there we make our run!!!

GOOD NIGHT AND GOOD HOCKEY….Gene Hart

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  1. The best team in the Regular Season rarely wins the Stanley Cup. It’s all about getting good goaltending and timely goals. Very hard to win a playoff series if you lose two games in Overtime. I remember Montreal winning over half their games in the playoffs in a Cup winning year in OT without a loss.

    If they get in, they can win.

    • Exactly my point of the post. The other side is if the team is flat going in to the playoffs they won’t be around long. It’s too late to turn on the switch. Flyers need a goalie to get hot!!!

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