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Flyers’ Regression Shows Just How Much Trouble They’re In

Alan Bass
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Author: The Hockey News

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Flyers’ Regression Shows Just How Much Trouble They’re In

Alan Bass
By:

Already the worst team in the NHL, the Philadelphia Flyers regressed to their 1960s roots Friday night, showing just why they are the laughing stock of the league this season. Down 7-0 to the Ovechkin-less Washington Capitals in the third period, the floodgates opened and a bench-clearing brawl began. It was just like the old-days of the Broad Street Bullies, but with a twist – this time, it was less bullying, and more child jumping up and down trying to get his mother to pay attention to him.

Already the worst team in the NHL, the Philadelphia Flyers regressed to their 1960s roots Friday night, showing just why they are the laughing stock of the league this season. Down 7-0 to the Ovechkin-less Washington Capitals in the third period, the floodgates opened and a bench-clearing brawl began. It was just like the old-days of the Broad Street Bullies, but with a twist – this time, it was less bullying, and more child jumping up and down trying to get his mother to pay attention to him.

What started with Wayne Simmonds and Tom Wilson duking it out at center ice after a vicious hit, ended with goaltender Ray Emery skating the length of the ice, offering to fight Holtby, being waved off by his opponent, then grabbing Holtby and pummeling him repeatedly until the rest of the Capitals miraculously made their way over to help put an end to the ridiculous charade. Emery was given a game misconduct, in addition to penalties for leaving the crease and instigating. Altogether, 114 penalty minutes were handed out on that play, 64 of them to Flyers players.

Not only did Flyers fans just finish chanting “Fire Holmgren” when the brawl broke out, but they cheered for probably the first time all night. However, the issue here is not only that this happened, but also that Flyers management seemed to endorse the behavior of their players in what was already an embarrassing game.

“Do I have an issue with it? Probably not,” said GM Paul Holmgren.

“They care,” said coach Craig Berube, “That’s basically what it boils down to.”

In a perfect world, Emery would be meeting with Brendan Shanahan on Monday to discuss his behavior, and face a lengthy suspension. In a perfect world, Ed Snider and Paul Holmgren would be receiving calls from an angry commissioner to ensure this does not happen again. But will that be the reality next week?

Unfortunately for Philadelphia, what the reality is right now is an embarrassed team who put unfathomable shame to themselves, in a year that they should probably not be drawing too much attention to their last-place team.

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Flyers’ Regression Shows Just How Much Trouble They’re In