Best-Case Scenario for Each Philadelphia Flyers Star During 2013-2014 Season
Many of the team's superstars had below average stats, yet a few Philly players thrived in the lockout-shortened season. Unfortunately, the Flyers were unable to find any momentum or chemistry on a consistent basis—falling short of a playoff berth.
Philadelphia is a highly talented hockey club with the ability to make the postseason. If the Flyers stars can live up to their potential, they should be back in the playoffs and fighting for the Stanley Cup.
Claude Giroux played his first full season as the Flyers captain and toward the end of the season, showed his leadership abilities.
The young forward struggled early in the season but ended up leading the team with 48 points in 48 games. He proved to be Philadelphia's leader on and off the ice.
Giroux's best-case scenario in the 2013-2014 would be to fully understand the importance of being captain for the Orange and Black and command his team back into the postseason. He must make every player around him better, while elevating his own play.
Jakub Voracek was the Flyers most valuable player and elevated his play to an incredible height.
The five-year veteran's previous high mark was 18 goals in 78 games during the 2011-2012 campaign, but Voracek totaled 22 scores in 48 games during the abbreviated season—to set a new high.
His best case scenario for the 2013-14 season would be to continue his elite play during an 82 game season on the Flyers first line. If the Philadelphia star can contribute at a high pace, he could help guide the team back to elite status.
Wayne Simmonds has been a tremendous addition for the Flyers, since coming over from the Los Angeles Kings in 2011.
The hard-nosed forward had one of the best months in the NHL, when he totaled 11 points in the month of February. In the month, Simmonds accomplished two Gordie Howe hat tricks and two game-winning goals.
The best case scenario for him in 2013-14 is to consistently contribute offensively for a full season and limit unnecessary penalty minutes, in which he was the team's second most-penalized player.
Scott Hartnell had a year he would like to soon forget. After leading the Flyers in goals during the 2011-12 season, the ferocious player tallied only eight goals in 32 games last year.
Granted he missed a month of action due to a broken foot, Hartnell was never able to find his rhythm upon returning to the ice. Sloppy penalties and poor play led to his demotion to the fourth line during the regular season.
The best case scenario for Hartnell in the 2013-14 season is to find his all star caliber play, while serving as the team's emotional leader. The Flyers must find another scoring threat, other than Voracek, and Hartnell has the potential to be that player.
Kimmo Timonen's best years may be behind him, but the Finland native can still produce at an extremely high level.
The Flyers' defenseman was fourth on the team in total points (29) and tied for second with 24 assists in 45 games played. Not too bad for the veteran, who, according to the Courier Post, had doubts entering the abbreviated season.
Philadelphia signed its star blueliner to a one-year extension, which will likely be Timonen's final year of play in the NHL. According to USA Today's Dave Isaac, Timonen is 99 percent certain next season will be his last.
"The timing was based on how I felt," Timonen said. "I knew from Game 1 of the season that the Flyers wanted to keep me and I wanted to stay here. I didn't want to move anywhere else. I wanted to retire as a Flyer."
The best-case scenario for the Flyers' leader would be to win a Stanley Cup in Philadelphia and end his career on top, while wearing the Orange and Black sweater.
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