Flyers/Isles Thursday night is the most pivotal game in recent regular-season franchise history. The Flyers were completely embarrassed, destroyed, manhandled, and disheartened by a New York Rangers team.
On to the next?? Not so fast.
This is a franchise altering loss that is unacceptable at any level of the organization and certainly by the fan’s standards. Losing a game is one thing, but getting crushed because of lack of effort is what differentiates this loss to any of the recent losses to the Caps or Penguins.
For this game and this edition there is only ONE Storyline for the Flyers/Isles:
How do the Flyers Respond?
Is it time to fold up the tents and look towards October?
Has the coaching staff lost the locker room?
Is the leadership core of this team (Giroux, Voracek, Coots, JVR, Hayes, Provorov) leading by example with energy and heart?
Can Myers/Sanheim rebound from a collective -12 performance?
Can the forwards FREAKING BACKCHECK to eliminate odd-man rushes?
These are just some of the questions that need to be addressed in the locker room and in short order. The the 2nd place Isles are licking their chops at the wounded prey coming to their arena tonight.
All the questions will not be answered tonight of course, but there is one thing that can be answered and controlled by the Flyers – will they put in effort?
Effort and urgency were a missing ingredient in the first two periods and by the third the team was in power-save mode. Can they come out against a well-structured Islanders team and get back to simple, responsible hockey?
The optimists say the Flyers are still only three-points out of a playoff spot, some games in hand, each game is a four-point game…
Still a shot.
But unless the effort and the urgency comes back starting tonight, this team is selling by Monday.
Photo Credit – Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire