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We asked ChatGPT to write three Flyers mini articles

and the results are...interestding

Chicago Blackhawks v Philadelphia Flyers Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

In an increasingly technologically advanced world, driven by powerful algorithms and artificial intelligence, how well does this new technology know hockey? That is the question we set out to answer today at Broad Street Hockey!

To preface, however, a bit of context.

If you haven’t heard of ChatGPT, this is a program which takes user prompts and returns text, capable of remembering items within a conversation and drawing from its massive database to best answer prompts as best it can. However, today, we’re going to take ChatGPT to Jim’s for a cheesesteak and walk it down Broad Street, and turn it into a Flyers’ fan, or more appropriately, a Flyers writer.

Below, we gave ChatGPT three prompts to see just how well it knows hockey, the Flyers, and what it thinks of some key questions we could ask about the team’s past, present, and future. Here goes nothing!


Prompt 1: Write an alternate history of the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1990’s if they drafted Jaromir Jagr with the 4th overall pick in the 1990 draft instead of Mike Ricci. Assume that the Flyers as a result don’t trade for Eric Lindros in 1992.

If the Philadelphia Flyers had drafted Jaromir Jagr with the 4th overall pick in the 1990 draft instead of Mike Ricci, it’s likely that their fortunes in the 1990s would have been much different. Jagr was one of the most dominant players of his era and would have provided the Flyers with a powerful offensive presence. Without the addition of Eric Lindros in 1992, the Flyers may have struggled to match the physicality and skill of other teams in the league, but Jagr would have been a game-changer.

With Jagr on the team, the Flyers’ offense would have been among the most potent in the league, and they would have been a force to be reckoned with in the playoffs. They would have had a much better chance of winning the Stanley Cup and would have likely made it to the finals multiple times.

Jagr would have also helped the Flyers to become one of the most popular teams in the league, as he was known for his entertaining and flashy style of play, as well as his charismatic personality. He would have brought more fans to the games, and his presence would have made the Flyers a more exciting team to watch.

Overall, if the Flyers had drafted Jaromir Jagr in 1990, they would have become one of the most dominant and exciting teams of the 1990s, and would have been a perennial Stanley Cup contender. They would have become one of the most popular team in the league, and would have been a team that the fans would have loved to watch for many years to come.

This prompt was to test how well the AI knows of the league’s history, and it somewhat delivered! It noted that Eric Lindros was an absolute truck in the NHL, as noted by the following sentence:

“Without the addition of Eric Lindros in 1992, the Flyers may have struggled to match the physicality and skill of other teams in the league”

However, one can’t really claim this to be true, as without trading for Lindros, the Flyers would have been able to keep Peter Forsberg assuming they don’t trade him at some point, and Peter the Great was about as physically dominant and skilled as they come.

As for the following paragraph:

“Jagr would have also helped the Flyers to become one of the most popular teams in the league, as he was known for his entertaining and flashy style of play, as well as his charismatic personality. He would have brought more fans to the games, and his presence would have made the Flyers a more exciting team to watch.”

This would likely have been true, but equally, Eric Lindros accomplished the same thing apart from the flashiness aspect. Lindros was very good, but he’d much rather have bowled through a defender than dangled around him.

Overall, however, a solid job! Let’s see if ChatGPT can keep it up...

Prompt 2: Write an article analyzing the Philadelphia Flyers’ flaws over the past five seasons and how they can work to overcome them.

The Philadelphia Flyers have been a consistent playoff team over the past five seasons, but they have struggled to take that next step and become a true Stanley Cup contender. Despite the talent on their roster, they have been plagued by several flaws that have held them back from reaching their full potential.

One of the biggest issues for the Flyers has been their lack of consistency. They have had a tendency to play well for stretches of games, only to follow it up with prolonged periods of poor play. This has been especially true in the playoffs, where they have often been unable to maintain the high level of play that got them there.

Another problem for the Flyers has been their lack of scoring depth. While they have a few high-end forwards who can put the puck in the net, they have often been reliant on those players to carry the offense. When those top players have struggled, the Flyers have been unable to find goals from other sources. This lack of depth has been a major factor in their struggles to advance deep in the playoffs.

The Flyers have also had issues with defensive consistency as well. Despite having some solid defensive players on their roster, they have often given up too many goals, especially in high-pressure situations. They have struggled to maintain their defensive structure, and have been prone to giving up odd-man rushes and other high-danger chances.

So, what can the Flyers do to overcome these flaws? To start, they need to focus on consistency. They need to find a way to play at a high level consistently throughout the season, and especially in the playoffs. They also need to find a way to get more scoring from their depth players, so that they are not overly reliant on their top scorers.

To improve their defensive play, the Flyers should focus on maintaining a strong defensive structure, and working on their transition game, which will help them to limit odd-man rushes and other high-danger chances. They should also focus on developing their younger players, specifically on the defensive side, which will help them in the long run.

Finally, the Flyers should also focus on being more mentally strong. They need to learn how to handle the pressure of high-pressure situations and have a strong mental approach when things are not going their way. They need to have the ability to come back from adversity and not let one bad play or one bad period derail their entire game.

In conclusion, the Philadelphia Flyers have the talent to be a Stanley Cup contender, but they have been held back by several flaws. If they can address these issues and find a way to play consistently, they should be able to take that next step and become a true force in the NHL. With their young talent, solid veterans and great coaching staff, they have the potential to be a dominant team for many years to come.

This prompt was kept fairly general to see what the AI could source from, and overall, it was able to successfully talk hockey, though it was quite generic, and it falsely labelled the Flyers as a “consistent playoff team” given that they have only made the playoffs 2 of the last 5 seasons.

Primarily, it identified the Flyers core flaws as:

  1. Lack of consistency
  2. Lack of scoring depth
  3. Lack of defensive consistency

While these are fairly generic flaws, one can definitely argue the Flyers have displayed these tendencies. The Flyers have been very streaky under the late Hextall and current Fletcher era, have a lack of scoring depth that has only been heightened by a lack of Claude Giroux (we all miss you) and Sean Couturier, and they haven’t had a real #1 defenseman since, if we are being honest, Chris Pronger (or Kimmo Timonen).

What’s interesting is that two of the suggestions ChatGPT gave the Flyers, they have somewhat attempted:

They should also focus on developing their younger players, specifically on the defensive side, which will help them in the long run.

They need to have the ability to come back from adversity and not let one bad play or one bad period derail their entire game.

The Flyers have let young players play more often this season, and the biggest standout so far in terms of re-defining expectations has been the apparent rise of Morgan Frost (he has already eclipsed his previous total points in a season!). However, he is not a defenseman, and it isn’t quite fair to describe Travis Sanheim as a “young player” anymore given he is solidly a veteran now at 26 years old (and as someone about to turn 26 in the summer, this greatly upsets me).

The Flyers have also been far better at not letting themselves spiral out of games in the last few seasons, which can be credited to the firing of Dave Hakstol, almost certainly.

Again, this is a solid article, though a bit generic. Will ChatGPT go 3/3?

Prompt 3: Write an article analyzing the Philadelphia Flyers’ farm system in both the AHL, Juniors, and Europe, and who the Flyers should be focusing on drafting.

The Philadelphia Flyers have a deep and talented farm system that is a key part of their long-term success. The Flyers have a number of prospects in the American Hockey League (AHL), Canadian junior leagues, and Europe who have the potential to make an impact at the NHL level.

In the AHL, the Flyers have a number of prospects who have already made an impact at the professional level. Players like Morgan Frost, Joel Farabee, and German Rubtsov have shown flashes of brilliance and have the potential to be key contributors for the Flyers in the near future.

The Flyers also have a number of talented prospects in the Canadian junior leagues. Players like Wyatt Wylie, Cam York York, and Mason Millman are all highly touted prospects who have the potential to be impact players in the NHL.

In Europe, the Flyers have a number of prospects who are developing their game in different leagues. Linus Högberg, Egor Serdyuk, and Samuel Ersson are all highly-rated prospects who have the potential to make an impact at the NHL level.

When it comes to the draft, the Flyers should focus on drafting players who have a high ceiling and have the potential to be impact players in the NHL. The Flyers should also focus on drafting players who have a high hockey IQ, as well as good skating ability and a strong work ethic.

The Flyers should also focus on drafting players who have a good two-way game, as well as being able to contribute on both sides of the ice. This is especially important for defensemen, as they need to be able to contribute in both the offensive and defensive zones.

In addition, the Flyers should focus on drafting players who have a good physical presence and are able to play a physical game. They should also focus on drafting players who are versatile and can play in different roles and situations.

In conclusion, the Philadelphia Flyers have a deep and talented farm system that is a key part of their long-term success. The Flyers have a number of prospects in the AHL, Canadian junior leagues, and Europe who have the potential to make an impact at the NHL level. When it comes to the draft, the Flyers should focus on drafting players who have a high ceiling and have the potential to be impact players in the NHL, as well as players who have a good two-way game, are versatile and have a good physical presence.

Now this article was...less good than the previous two. Unfortunately, ChatGPT has a database that only extends to 2021, and you can tell with the inclusion of German Rubtsov in the AHL section. In fact, let’s take a look at all the prospects mentioned:

German Rubtsov - currently unsigned in North America, playing in KHL

Morgan Frost - in the NHL

Joel Farabee - in the NHL

Wyatte Wylie - in the AHL

Cam “York” York - split between NHL and AHL, currently in NHL

Mason Millman - in the ECHL

Linus Högberg - in the AHL

Yegor Serdyuk - in the VHL in Russia, unsigned in North America

Samuel Ersson - split between NHL and AHL

From just an appearance perspective, the article’s assertion that the Flyers had a strong farm system can be argued as true. Four of the nine players mentioned have appeared in the NHL, which is a pretty good rate considering how hard it can be to develop prospects. However, other than Joel Farabee, none of these players have proven they have future star power (you can argue Morgan Frost but he hasn’t proven himself nearly for as long as Farabee).

The once deep Flyer farm system has now seen most of those prospects either make it to the NHL or phase out, as evidenced by their 22nd of 32nd NHL Farm System ranking (via The Hockey Writers).

Meanwhile, the article’s advice to draft high ceiling players who are physically strong and play a two-way game is pretty on brand for the organization’s historical strategy. However, this is essentially the ideal prospect blue print for 9 of 10 GMs in the NHL, and is fairly generic. I think every NHL team wants the next Patrice Bergeron or Sean Couturier. Those guys change franchises.

So, this not a terrible article by any stretch, but is outdated due to database limitations.


So, there we have it! We’re just one step away from ChatGPT calling into WIP to reminisce about Bobby Clark!

To wrap up, what did you think of ChatGPT’s Flyers articles? Vote below:

Poll

Grade ChatGPT’s writing:

This poll is closed

  • 4%
    A
    (8 votes)
  • 30%
    B
    (56 votes)
  • 33%
    C
    (63 votes)
  • 20%
    D
    (38 votes)
  • 11%
    F
    (21 votes)
186 votes total Vote Now