At the halfway point of the 2021-22 season, the playoffs aren’t happening and things appear to be in shambles on and off the ice. So what happens in the final 41 games? What makes them noteworthy? Here are three questions that are facing the Flyers going forward for the remainder of the season.
The Flyers have traded defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere, plus a 2022 second-round pick and 2022 seventh-round pick to the Arizona Coyotes. While Arizona sent nothing in return to the Flyers in terms of a player or pick, they did absorb all of Gostisbehere’s $4.5 million cap hit.
Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher addressed the moves made by the team on trade deadline day, trading Michael Raffl and Erik Gustafsson and re-signing Scott Laughton, while also starting to take a glimpse into what should be a busy offseason.
Times like these leave the masses calling for action of any kind. You certainly got that on Tuesday from the Flyers. Less than 24 hours after completing a comeback win over the Buffalo Sabres, 4-3, in overtime, the Flyers made an interesting move, placing defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere on waivers.
GM Chuck Fletcher didn’t gloss over the cold hard facts of where the Flyers rank in various categories. He called out the puck management problems. But his most telling response came when he was answering a question regarding Erik Gustafsson that ultimately transferred over into the defense as a whole.
Losses are losses at this stage of the season. Whether it’s 9-0, or 6-1, or 2-1 in overtime, they all hurt the same in the standings. It’s a missed opportunity at two points that you had when the night began. But in this game, when the Flyers did deliver the effort and executed better for almost the entire 60 minutes, two glaring mistakes cost them, and this time, they didn’t have the answers to make a couple of mistakes change the result.
In Saturday’s game, it took just over six minutes for the Flyers to allow a goal. After another 10 minutes, the Islanders had four on the board and the game was as good as over. Two more third-period turnovers padded the score further, resulting in a 6-1 defeat for the Flyers. There’s an awful lot to unpack in another result like that.