Flyers Not Quite Among the Elite

As we approach the mid-way point of the season, let’s take a look at where teams stand thus far in terms of their status in the League.  We can divide the NHL teams into four categories in terms of their performance so far this season: Elite, Very Good, Mediocre, and Poor.  This is a little arbitrary, but using the total points achieved I think we can get a fairly accurate idea of each team’s status:

Elite: San Jose (60), Boston (60), Detroit (53)

Very Good: Washington (51), NY Rangers (49), Montreal (48), Chicago (47), Philadelphia (47), Calgary (46), Vancouver (43), New Jersey (43), Pittsburgh (42), Anaheim (42)

Mediocre: Buffalo (39), Carolina (39), Colorado (39), Pheonix (39), Edmonton (37), Nashville (37), Florida (37), Columbus (36), Minnesota (36), Los Angeles (36), Toronto (36), Dallas (35)

Poor: St.Louis (31), Tampa Bay (30), Ottawa (29), Atlanta (28), NY Islanders (26)

Certainly teams can move from one category to another as the season unfolds.  For example, Washington’s hot play recently could put them into elite status if that play continues.  My question is, and let’s get some reader opinions on this one, what do the Flyers need to do in order to achieve elite status this season?  I think they have the potential but are not quite there yet.  My take: (1) The Flyers still need to get that consistent effort from everyone.  Some games they just don’t show up.  (2) Tighter coverage in the defensive zone on a consistent basis. (3) I would like to see another forward who can pick up some scoring slack.  Briere’s return should help here, but a trade will have to happen first to clear salary cap space.  Who they let go here could be the most crucial decision for GM Paul Homlgren this season. 

Let’s have your thoughts.

2 Responses to “Flyers Not Quite Among the Elite”

  1. flyersfan44 Says:

    Taking the Oilers to seven games and losing 3-1 in Game 7 really hurt. I remember the marketing of a Wayne Gretzky doll around this time. In fact, someone in my section at the Spectrum had one with a black eye drawn on it, stitches on the face, and a rope around its neck. He swung it from the third level during stoppages in play to the amusement of many.

  2. I think we’re almost there. We need another top defenseman (which is highly improbable) or a big time scorer (Kovalchuk?). That would give the Flyers the tools to be the elite in the East. I just hope it wouldn’t be a repeat of the 1985-87 stretch where the Flyers were only the second best team in the league. (An aside – I still can’t stand the sight of Wayne Gretzky because of that. I still think he’s half a sissy with a cute little hairdo.)

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