Thursday, April 2, 2009

Down...and Out?

"I'm ringin' all the warning bells,
careful you don't hurt yourself."

"Your love is like a roller coaster, baby, baby."

--Ohio Players

Just over a week ago, I wrote about the Flyers finally seeming to come around. I described an argument with my friend Matt over the effects of falling just short in Detroit, and how I was "righter" than he was. I spoke of breaking out of the Jekyll-Hyde routine that had emerged in the prior weeks, how the Flyers were finally gelling and hitting their stride. My whole gist was how impeccable the timing was.

It seems I spoke too soon.

Mr. Hyde has returned. Matt is looking wiser for lamenting the loss of crucial points against the Red Wings. And the Flyers' sense of timing, simply put, sucks.

The day after I last wrote, we lost at home to the Panthers, to backup goalie we couldn't solve. Saturday we stormed back to a shootout win against...the Islanders. That's right, the worst team in the league. A home loss to Boston was another missed opportunity, but at least they're good. But last night's loss to the miserable Maple Leafs? In the stretch-run to solidify your playoff spot? That's just shameful. And suddenly, the nine-point, three-game cushion has deflated to just five points over ninth-place Florida. Suddenly, the offense that scared everyone is scaring no one. Suddenly, we're a losing streak away from missing the playoffs entirely.

I don't understand it. But the time to right the ship is running out. And these are the moments where the coach and the veterans need to step up, fire up the boys, and inject a sense of urgency. Coach Stevens, Mike Knuble, Danny Briere, I'm looking at you.

It's time to step it up.
Other Musings:

Don't look now, but the Sixers are playing good ball, and could make some noise in the East. They entered 2009 at 13-18, and are now 38-35. Recent wins include a shocker over the mighty Lakers in LA, and wins against Miami, Portland, and Atlanta. Just think of what might be possible when Elton Brand comes back healthy next year.

What's really fun to say is that the Phillies begin their World Series title defense this Sunday at home against the Braves. Sure, we all know that I'm the eternal optimist, but why can't this team repeat? Perhaps with the monkey off their backs, they may be more relaxed and thus more consistent than they were last year. And if I'm other NL teams (ahem, the Mets), that's a scary thought.

The Eagles must have signed somebody important by this point, right? Right?

Anyone else think that the Mastercard priceless commercials were old ABOUT TEN YEARS AGO?

I don't know exactly why, but I really like the family in the rollover minutes commercials for AT&T. I find myself at random occasions throughout my week just saying, "Antiques? They're rollover minutes!" I like when she says, "Beat it, kid." Mom wins in this one. But my favorite one is still this one. Mom doesn't fare so well here.

And lastly, just a brief reminder that the Phillies begin their World Series title defense on Monday night.