The most recent BSH Radio episode got me a little peeved.
First of all, let me say that this episode was about 90 minutes total broken into 2 segments due to a technical problem. For the first 60 minutes the tone was positive and the guys went to great lengths talking about how awesome the "Draft in Philly" experience was and the surrounding parties were epic. They talked about the new draft picks and the possibility that Hextall might(let's hope) have hit a home run with this draft class. Time will tell. And we didn't waste a pick with a 4th line face-puncher. Yeah!
What has me peeved is the final 30 minutes or so. The collective moan-fest from the guys was pathetic.
The conversation turned to free agency and the salary cap. Boo hoo. They moaned that the Flyers have so many average or mediocre players on big long overpaid deals. We couldn't go out and sign a free agent. It is a disaster. The sky is falling. Forget that...the sky has fallen. The only reason the Flyers aren't squished flat is because we have the ginger jesus - Claude Giroux.
Stop it with the collective whining!
Maybe we are okay. We went to game 7 with the Eastern Conference Champs. We didn't have Mason for a few games in that series. Oh man...I wish we could play that series with Mason healthy for the whole thing. We missed several wide-open-nets in the latter half of the series that could have changed the outcome. How would our perception change if we scored on one of those chances and won the series? Think of the Cup champion LA Kings. They were down 3-0 in the first round and came back to win that series and then the whole thing. They are now the model of how to build your franchise. But what if they lost one of those games and were out. The perception would be they are really, really flawed. With a salary cap, the difference between hero and goat is a lot less than you think.
We got off to the horrible start last year and stormed back into the playoffs and came within inches of winning round 1. When other teams were coasting - we were clawing like mad to just get in the tournament. Maybe we peaked just a little early last year. Maybe we wore ourselves down a little too much trying to dig out. Maybe we are okay.
So the moan-fest by the BSH guys went on about so many mediocre guys with long overpaid deals. We can't sign anyone. What? So you are saying we have too many bad contracts now....we have no room to sign another overpaid contract right now in free agency?
Maybe we are okay. Maybe not having any room was the best thing possible. Look at a lot of those free agent deals. They are horrible. Why are you pining for one of them?
Maybe we are okay. We learned that Jason Akeson can play in the NHL. Is he a superstar? No. But he looks like he can play to me. What if we use him instead of an overpaid free agent you are pining for now. Let's at least find out if he can play or not.
More whining from the BSH guys about the Hartnell trade. Super- awesome hockey player Hartnell with a pesky little "bad contract" problem got traded for a washed up horrible hockey player with a "bad contract" problem Umberger.
Maybe we are okay. Umberger a former Blue Jacket who struggled mightily the last few years. Sounds kind of like Steve Mason. A former Blue Jacket who struggled. He came to the Flyers got a fresh start and a new coach in his ear and turned his game around. What if Lappy and Berube get in Umberger's ear here and give him a fresh start in the place he made his name originally? Maybe Chief's hard-skating practices agree with RJ and he becomes a happier more confident contributing player. Maybe in a game sometime this year Umberger is not doing that well and feeling the stress a little bit. Then "G" looks him in the eye and says "If you don't go get a goal next shift...I will pinch your ass like you are a Canadian Mountie!" And RJ busts out laughing and drains all the stress away and plays his next shift "loose as a goose." Maybe we are okay. We'll see.
The BSH guys moaned a little about Vinny.
Maybe we are okay. Well, this one I am not sure about. But maybe we are okay. What if Vinny sees that no one else really wants him and realizes he will be stuck playing 8 minutes a game on the fourth line if he doesn't change something. What if he got into tip-top skating shape and worked all summer on the things the coaching staff talked to him about in his season exit interview? What if he doesn't get injured early this year and has a rebound season? Or - maybe he gets traded later this summer. Maybe we are okay.
Maybe we are okay. Laughton might be here soon. Gostisbehere, Hagg, Morin might be here soon. Maybe one of those guys gets to go to The-Kimmo-Timonen-school-of-defense for part of this season.
Maybe we are okay. Maybe Raffl improves on his "pretty darn good" rookie season. Maybe Brayden Schenn and Couturier continue to improve. Maybe Simmonds and Voracek and Read and Giroux can get a better start this year with a proper training camp run by Lappy and Berube. Maybe our new assistant coach Gord Murphy does a good job coaching up the defensemen. Maybe we are okay.
Maybe we are okay. Maybe Hextall knows what he is doing. Maybe holding a hard line on how much salary we will take back in a "Vinny" deal is smart. You know...so we don't have tons of dead money on the books. Maybe Hextall's philosophy on letting the prospects develop a little in the minors is a "good" thing. Maybe Hextall not signing a bad free agent contract this summer is smart. Maybe we are okay.
Maybe the BSH guys are right that "G" is the only thing keeping us from being squished flat. But maybe we are okay. Come on guys. Think Positive for once. Maybe we are okay.