The 6th seeded Flyers have six games on their regular season schedule. Three home games, three away games. That’s all that separates us and the Stanley Cup playoffs. A final game at the Islanders, a home finale against Montreal, Red Wings in town on Sunday on NBC, finale at Toronto, and a home and home finishing in Philadelphia against the Rangers. That’s a couple tough games right there. After looking like a great team on Sunday against the Devils (winning 5-1), the Flyers will be without Dan Carcillo who has been drawing many penalties lately and has been helping out with key scoring chances in the offensive zone. Dan Carcillo has been suspended two games by the NHL for an infraction that occurred during Sunday’s Devils game with Clarkson. The video was found by a commenter on The 700 Level (Chris) and can be seen here.
The call for a suspension in itself is questionable. Clarkson and Carbomb were throwing punches and Carcillo’s stick was in there, and seemed to get pushed up when Clarkson was shoving him. Still a penalty, but not necessarily a suspend-able offense when you have Matt Cooke skating around and knocking peoples’ heads off. It’s unfortunate that he has to sit against the Islanders and Montreal this week, because he looked really good on Sunday with Richie and Giroux. Looks like Cote will definitely be playing another game, and if JVR can’t come back yet, we will have to call up a Phantom (Laliberte?). Shows how inconsistent the NHL is, especially to the Flyers as of late. Gagne was denied another goal at Pittsburgh this weekend in their loss; a play that changed the game.
I’m not going to complain about all that though, they need to move on from it. The game on Sunday was a great start, but they need to follow-up that effort and sweep the Islanders on Thursday. They should use the days off to get better, healthy, and focused for the stretch of six games ahead. The first round of the playoffs isn’t going to come easy, the best they can do is work hard towards it and hope they get a more favorable match-up then the top-seed.