Following "The Lost Weekend II," which featured yet another 5-2 loss to the Atlantic Division-leading New York Rangers, as well taking part in the Detroit Red Wings' record-tying 20th consecutive home victory by losing 4-3 on Sunday despite holding two leads in the game, I, as a fan, have come to grips with the fact that the Philadelphia Flyers cannot win the Stanley Cup this season.
I can't remember such a solid, competitive Flyers team with such an obvious disparity between themselves and the elite-level competition.
The Flyers have scored the second-most goals in the NHL with 182 (Boston Bruins, 184) and their 18 road wins are tied with the Rangers for the second most in the league as well (Vancouver Canucks, 19).
The power play, ranked among the top five recently, is operating at 19.5 percent, sixth in the league.
The Flyers are receiving key contributions from all facets of their lineup. Ten players have 25-plus points. Nine players have 10-plus goals scored (Jake Voracek has nine and Brayden Schenn has eight), and rookies have contributed 40 of the team's 182 goals (22 percent).
But the 2011-12 version of the Philadelphia Flyers just do not look like Stanley Cup champions.
Against teams currently holding first place in their division, the Flyers are 4-7-1 (including two wins over the Florida Panthers).
Now, I am not saying the front office can't and/or won't add a big, physical 20-plus-minute defenseman who can fuel the special teams and allow one of the goalies to play themselves into a rhythm to create momentum for a Stanley Cup run, and as a fan that is what I would like to see.
But, as currently constructed, I don't see it happening, and here's why (the segue into the slideshow is always the sentence I take the most time to write but it always ends up cliche, corny or boring, you know?):