In physics, there is the famous theory about “Schrödinger’s cat”. The theory states that if you place a cat in a box (good luck at accomplishing that task!) with a vial of something deadly, like poison or radioactive materials, you will not know if the cat is alive or dead until you open the box. So, until you open the box, it is reasonable to assume that the cat is both alive and dead at the same time. It’s a scientific paradox, I’m not a scientist, so that’s the best way I can explain it.
If Schrödinger had a favorite hockey team, it would be the Flyers….a team that is both good and bad at the same time. Here is a team that started off the year fairly strong, collapsed into a 10-straight losing streak, rebounded between the Christmas and All-Star breaks to return to respectability, .500 record, and possible playoff contention, and then shut down right after the break again. Who is this team? Are they good? Are they bad? Are they both at the same time?
Well, last night’s game would argue that they are terrible. After Sunday’s performance, of what Coach John Tortorella called…and I quote…”A shit game”…the Flyers seemed to say, “Hold my beer!” On Sunday, they lost 4-3 and had only 18 shots in a lackluster game that was totally winnable.
Last night, they got pounded 6-2…and it was never even that close. The Flyers were down 2-0 after the first after being outshot 12-1. Kevin Hayes was the only Flyer who got a shot off in the first period. The team did give up a shorthanded goal, however, to Jared McCann to kick the game off. Because if you aren’t going to bother to take a shot during your own power play, you might as well let the other team do it.
Carter Hart was chased out of the game midway through the second period after giving up four goals on 19 shots. That’s right…the Kraken had the same amount of shots in two periods than the Flyers would have all game. Samuel Ersson gave up two goals on 11 shots in relief.
The Flyers finally got on the board after being down 5-0. Travis Konecny broke a 13 game scoreless drought with a pair of goals in the third. His 26 goals are a new career high for him. His 51 points this season are just 10 away from his career high set in 2019-20. So, at least Konecny was a bright spot.
But it’s not enough. This team has to start wanting to win. It’s not time off from the break or the long road trip. They are playing sloppily. They need to be more consistent and they need to be playing with heart. Whatever they had after Christmas, they need to find again. So, are the Flyers are good team playing badly or a bad team playing well? Who is this team?