Everyone falls victim to it: being so insular about your hockey fandom, that you do not take any minute of the day to understand what is going on around the league. For the Philadelphia Flyers, and the absolutely miserable time we are having watching this damn team, it means being so obsessed with every single transaction to the point where we are just waiting around for the trade deadline and then the draft and then an empty free agency and then another season with a probably worse team.
It will stink. But how much more of a stinky situation — ew! gross! — are the Flyers in compared to other teams around the NHL? Let’s take a gander at some teams that are certainly worse off compared to our favorite hockey club.
Hopefully this makes you feel better.
The Edmonton Oilers
Imagine having two of the best players in the entire league; two players that can change the game at their whim; and still finishing the season in a draft lottery spot. It’s one thing to be a very bad team, and be aware of it, but to have championship expectations before the first puck was even dropped? And then to be incredibly disappointed just 20 games in, even after a wonderful start. The Oilers are so damn bad and everyone in the hockey world is clowning on them right now. It’s wonderful.
While having that talent would be nice, they’ve already made their bed of shit and are going to lie in it for the next few years.
The Arizona Coyotes
This is easy. Despite playing some of the worst hockey we have seen in a while, their situation off the ice might be even worse than the one on it. Cycling through countless relocation rumors, or disruption in their front office, or ownership being a fairly hollow attempt at running a hockey team — you can think of so many reasons why you would rather be a fan of any other team but the Coyotes.
They’re about to trade their best defenseman and have nothing to really show for it. The best part is that they haven’t even drafted particularly well, so the pool of prospects that they should have theoretically gathered in return of being a terrible team, isn’t even really there.
Would you really rather be a Devils fan right now? You get the prospects and some young, exciting players, but it’s also the Devils. Their management and coaching is nowhere near to being a solid foundation for a rebuilding team to be stable, so there might be no real point to this whole thing.
It’s the Devils, c’mon.
Let’s point and laugh some more. The Canadiens appeared in the Stanley Cup Final several months ago, and now they’re the worst team in the entire NHL. Ha ha ha ha ha!
Injuries to some key players is certainly a factor, but it’s still hilarious. They are in absolute turmoil with the situation that former GM Marc Bergevin left them in. They have some mediocre talent on big contracts and others that simply don’t move the needle. That’s very Flyers-esque, but they also suck and are worse off.
Imagine giving up the whole world for Seth Jones, and signing him to a massive contract even before he plays for your stupid franchise, and then he turns out to be just a decent-to-meh defenseman.
And then you have your two franchise forwards on massive deals that prevent you from really trying to improve. And then your prospects suck ass. It’s terrible and that’s just the situation on the ice. Absolute dogshit team.
The Winnipeg Jets
Similar to the Oilers situation, this is one of expectations not being met. The Jets were heralded as the Canadian team to break the streak that has existed since 1993, and now they face an uphill battle even making the playoffs in a very top-heavy Central division. Winnipeg is built on a shaky foundation to begin with, relying a lot on goaltender Connor Hellebuyck to will wins out of nowhere and for the defense to be just ignored enough for the forwards to outscore their problems.
They might sneak into the post-season with some of that luck and if they get a rental or two; but it is just a situation where you don’t really want to be a part of. Your players are in their primes or heading into retirement, and you’re handcuffed with their contracts forever. For all the jokes made about the Oilers, the Jets have a worse point percentage right now in the standings.
The Ottawa Senators
Any team that is owned by Eugene Melnyk is doomed. They are young, exciting, and all the right adjectives you want for a rebuilding team that is heading into the okay, maybe we should try to get better territory — but with Melnyk still in charge and the two Pierres running the hockey team, it might not be a good thing when fans get tired and the players outgrow their prospect label.
The Seattle Kraken
You might be a new fan of a new team with little to no expectations, but you still have Dave Hakstol as your coach and that should make you worry about the Kraken’s front office.
The difficult thing with the Flyers right now is still deciding what direction they’re going to head towards. Claude Giroux leaving will be a massive signifier of the future, but it depends on what other moves they make in the next few months, to really communicate what future this fan base will have to endure. There are some prospects and young players that are making their way up the lineup, so there’s at least that — and they still have some damn good players too.
It’s frustrating right now, and we might be even more upset in the future, but imagine being fans of these teams? Ew, yuck, that’s so nasty.