At the beginning of this season, many saw the Flyers as a bubble team at best. While other analysts saw the Flyers closer to a lottery team than a playoff team. This is something Philadelphia fans accepted as they were ok with the Flyers getting a high draft pick to help speed up the rebuilding process and add to the already talented prospect pool. After a brutal stretch in November, many fans gave up on the season already and directed their attention to selling assets at the trade deadline as well as the NHL draft. Then March happened and the Flyers caught fire and found themselves in a playoff position. With 4 games left, the Flyers control their own destiny, but still face a chance they will not make the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Not making the playoffs not only will heartbreak the Philadelphia faithful due to no hockey in late April, but also because it gives them a brutal draft position at 14 (most likely). In a very top heavy draft this year, picking at 14 and missing out on some high end forward prospects such as Pierre Luc-Dubois, Matthew Tkachuk, Alex Nylander, and Julien Gauthier. With plenty of elite young defensemen already in the system such as Travis Sanheim, Sam Morin, Ivan Provorov, Robert Hagg, and Shayne Gostisbehere, the Flyers finishing out of the playoff race really kills their opportunity to address their weakness in young forward prospects. So although this stretch has been a great exciting run, if the Flyers miss out, then not only will pain be felt in the short run, but also in the long run as the Flyers are missing out on getting a high end forward prospect for the future. With that being said, even though the Flyers pick 14 it doesn’t mean that they won’t get a high end prospect as Ron Hextall and Chris Pryor have proven to be very talented in drafting, but picking top 10 doesn’t hurt their chances. Overall though, the absolute worst season a team can have is to finish 17th overall, and the Flyers unfortunately have that chance now. Big game against Detroit tomorrow!
***Thanks for reading and please excuse any grammar errors!