The Flyers just finished their best month of the year. After a 10-game losing streak, it seemed as though the Flyers making the playoffs would have to wait another year. Since that time though, the Flyers have become one of the hottest teams in the league. They finished the month of February with a record of 11-1-2. The only regulation loss they had occurred on February 1st, so for much of February, the Flyers were either winning, or posting nail biter losses. Thank you Philadelphia Eagles!
All kidding aside, this was able to occur thanks to the entire team stepping up as a whole and playing as a group. The top six went off for the entire month. Travis Konecny was able to continue his hot streak with newfound confidence. Nolan Patrick seemed to feed off of this; he has solidified himself on the second line. Oskar Lindblom has been a wonderful addition to the team, as his chemistry with Patrick has been electric. He has yet to find the back of the net, but it is only be a matter of time; every game, there seems to be at least three times where I almost jump up because I think he has scored. Shayne Gostisbehere was one of the top scoring defenseman in the league for February, and also proved that his two-way play has improved from prior years to the point where he is no longer a liability at all in his own end.
February was a great month, but the true tests will come throughout the rest of the season. If you look at the remainder of the Flyers schedule, you will see that the Flyers are playing playoff contenders a lot: ten of their eighteen remaining games come against teams that are currently in a playoff spot. They also play Florida once, Carolina twice, the Rangers twice, the Islanders once, Detroit once, and Colorado once. Florida, Carolina, and the Islanders are all pushing for playoff positions in our conference. The Avalanche are looking to make the playoffs in a crowded Central division where every win they can get outside of their division is key. Detroit and the Rangers may not be looking to make the playoffs, but they are both strong teams that could still very easily come away with a win over the Flyers.
Observing Philadelphia, I really think this team can still make a push for good playoff positioning despite having arguably one of the hardest schedules remaining, but if they are going to do it, they have to have the fire they had in February. The Carolina game where they lost 4-1 is a perfect example of how they cannot get comfortable where they are. This season is going to be a battle throughout both the regular season and (hopefully) playoffs.
Andrew is currently a computer engineering student at Penn State heading into his sophomore year. Andrew is a Toronto, Canada native turned Flyers fan and worships the game of hockey.