With nine games left in the season, there is only one conclusion left to draw: this group of players just isn’t very smart. Fresh off a loss to the playoff-bound yet beatable New York Islanders, the Flyers can pretty much call it a year. Instead, they are calling it a lack of mental awareness for the 22nd night in 39 contests (an above average amount for those keeping score at home – you know, in the standings).
Scott Hartnell said they needed to be smarter. Peter Laviolette said the difference is ‘making a different decision at a different time in the game’. As a professional, how can these things still be acceptable? Since it is obviously a flaw that is beyond repair, the only solution is that they just don’t have that much going on between the ole’ ears.
Out west, this attitude doesn’t fly for Colorado’s JS Giguere, who sits just eight points below the Flyers while backstopping the last-place Avalanche:
“It’s just embarrassing, the way we, you know, the energy we have in the room and the way we approach practices and the way we approach this game. It’s not how you’re going to win any games in this league. I mean, this is a team (Calgary) that we can beat if we set our minds to it, and every day is the same story….”
“There’s not one easy game in this league, so you’ve got to play hard and you’ve got to play well every night. You’ve got to find a way to get yourself motivated and focused. It has nothing to do with who you’re playing. It’s about how you prepare yourself and how you approach the game.”
It’s obvious this bunch of Flyers suffers from a similar lack of preparation and execution on a nightly basis. With the season pretty much over, do they mail it in or strive for a complete 60-minute effort? It would appear to be more of the former, since no one seems overly upset about the lack of results.
The attitude throughout the room flat-out stinks right now; but what reason will there be for it to suddenly change next year without some positive momentum as the season draws to a close? What huge change has to be made next to suddenly spark this team, and why does that even have to happen in the first place?
After the game last night, Captain Claude Giroux said they are a team that can play against anyone in the league and that the standings don’t reflect it; but why don’t they show up when it’s time to play? Why don’t their actions OFF the ice show that they know they are playing well below their capabilities?
It’s scary to think of this torment lasting for a full season, but the way things are going with this group as it stands, there doesn’t appear to be many answers to these questions. Luckily for Flyers fans, things don’t stay stagnant in Philadelphia for long – particularly when they fail to perform.
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