2010/04/25

Long Wait for Flyers

The Flyers played poorly toward the end of the season and ended up barely making the playoffs, on a penalty shot win in the last game of the regular season. This could be considered a high note entering the playoffs, and the Flyers kept that momentum going by beating the Devils soundly 4 games to 1, while winning 2 out of 3 in New Jersey.

The win against the Devils, despite the numerous injuries for the Flyers is continued momentum that you do not want to see slow down. However, as I mentioned, the Flyers are missing key players that could possibly be back at some point in these playoffs, if the Flyers keep winning, and the extra rest will do them good. Also, extra rest will do a guy like Ian Laperriere good who partially broke his orbital bone and required 70 stitches while taking a puck to the face to block a shot. I have to give mad props to Laperriere for doing whatever he can to help the team win, I will always like Laperriere because of that. It was very Aaron Roward-esche. Ian Laperriere, you are the man!

So, there are two schools of thought to the waiting in between games or playoff series. One thought is that you are on a hot streak, with momentum, and you want to keep that going, and want to play the next game right away. You don't want the Flyers to have time to think about the large situation they are in, or how they are probably playing a little over their heads, and that they will probably have to play the mighty Capitals this next series. You would rather have just kept the same schedule, and had maybe a game or two off, and jumped right into the next series. Unfortunately, proponents of this cannot be happy right now, as the Flyers were in first team in the entire playoffs to advance to the 2nd round, and the Capitals, the team who the Flyers will play if they win, have yet to even close out their series yet, and face a tough game 6 in Montreal tomorrow night.

The other school of thought is what is currently playing out. This is that it is always good to let your team rest up, especially into the playoffs, when the players have played an entire grueling hockey season. You get a chance to get some injuries rested up, and even the players who aren't injured have to be banged up, so you get a chance to recuperate, and start the next series fresh. Also, being the first team to advance also means that while the Flyers are recuperating, the Capitals are still playing and worrying about the Montreal Canadiens. The Capitals have to travel to Montreal to play game 6 tomorrow night, and then face a possible game 7. This will increase their chances to get tired out, or more injuries.

Personally, I think most of the debate on whether it is better to have rested or play right away is all just more talking points while your team isn't playing. I don't think it much matters, as long as your team is better, and comes out playing well, they have a chance in any series. There shouldn't be any excuse either way.

Hopefully the 2nd school of thought works out in this case, and that the Flyers can jump right back into action having rested up and not miss a beat next series, no matter who they play. Also, whoever they do end up playing, probably the Capitals, will hopefully be a little slower and worn out from their longer first round series.