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The Flyers are bottoming out

The Flyers are getting worse, and worse… and worse.

Sometimes, things looked like they were getting back on track— the win against Buffalo, the 5-3 lead in Calgary after 58 minutes. But the downs were harsh: a 7-1, nationally televised meltdown in Winnipeg, losing that 5-3 Calgary lead in a matter of one minute, and being outscored 9-2 in Edmonton and Vancouver.

The goaltenders are reeling. Brian Elliott is still injured, Michal Neuvirth is at the birth of his child, and Anthony Stolarz was just injured in Vancouver. Calvin Pickard was waived, and Alex Lyon is the best goalie the team has, right now. The only remaining option looks like Carter Hart, but throwing him into the fire is not what he needs.

The powerplay has scored just a single goal in its last 11 games. 29th in the league, at under 13%. For a team with this amount of talent, it’s mind-boggling.

The other end of the ice is host to the 30th ranked penalty kill in the NHL, beating the Chicago Blackhawks by a hair. They kill 73.5% of penalties, but to their credit, have scored more short-handed goals than powerplay goals in the past couple of weeks.

Special teams as a whole is on a historically bad level. The 2012 statistics: 5th ranked PK, 3rd ranked powerplay. Today, they have the fourth worst combined special teams score in the history of hockey.

Those teams drafted second, first, and fourth respectively in the coming draft.

Is Dave Hakstol really to blame for this current dumpster fire of a season? It may not really matter, because he’s going to be the scapegoat before too long. Expectations are that he’s out the door when the team lands in Philadelphia on Sunday.

Accurate, since he decided Oskar Lindblom needed to be scratched in favor of Jori Lehtera. While no fan can say they know what goes on in the locker room to suggest it’s a good idea, Andrew MacDonald played 12 more minutes (22:22) than Travis Sanheim in a 6-5 loss. Advanced statistics and a well oiled eyeball can see MacDonald having one of the worst seasons of any NHL defender.

There really aren’t any clear cut answers to the multitude of problems here. The roster freeze starts December 19th, so if there’s no moves between now and then, stop refreshing the Flyers news. Things aren’t looking great for anyone behind that bench right now.

Is Joel Quenneville in the cards? If he is, best of luck to him.

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