Until Thursday night, the Flyers will be taking in the Stanley Cup playoffs just like their fans — at home on the couch. Until a pair of Game 7’s play out, they won’t know who their next opponent is.
“We still have time to prepare and go over things,” Peter Laviolette said. “The important thing right now is to keep them moving. Break a sweat and move up and down the ice. These guys want to work. They want to run.”
That’s what they did in yesterday’s practice. The earliest the next round can start is likely Sunday, and the Flyers don’t want to be out of shape when that rolls around. Until then, they watch and they wait.
“I can’t wait to see who we’re gonna play,” Claude Giroux said. “We’ve just got to be patient and see who we’re gonna play.”
Still, the mind tends to wander. Do the Flyers really want to go up against the New York Rangers, a team they were 0-6 against in the regular season? Would they prefer a dangerous team in the Boston Bruins over the Washington Capitals and their red-hot goaltender, Braden Holtby?
“It doesn’t matter to us who we play — if it’s the Rangers or Ottawa, they’re all dangerous teams,” Giroux said. “It’s not gonna change our game plan, our system or the way we play. We’re a hard-working team and that’s obviously not gonna change.”
Now all that’s left is speculation about what storyline may come next. The first round was about former Penguins Jaromir Jagr and Max Talbot. There are still a few more old teams left with a lot of history between them. How about a Stanley Cup Final between the Flyers and the L.A. Kings?
“That would be nice,” former King Wayne Simmonds said with a big smile. “I wouldn’t mind that at all … to play the Kings and beat them in the Stanley Cup final. That would be pretty nice, but we’ve got some other things to take care of before that.”
Few notes on injured Flyers from yesterday’s practice:
Flyers defenseman Nick Grossmann skated with the Flyers’ Black Aces, the call-ups from the Phantoms, before the Flyers practiced.
Fellow blueliner Andrej Meszaros did skate with the team in a grey “no-contact” jersey. It is the first time he skated in full pads or with the team. Peter Laviolette said he was “very encouraged” to see Meszaros out there, but a return doesn’t appear to be imminent.