Friday, June 2, 2023

The Panthers prove the playoffs are broken. Or they don’t. A debate with myself

I have no idea what to make of the Florida Panthers. Let’s start there, if only to set expectations.

I’m pretty sure they’re the year’s best story – a legitimately great team coming off a Presidents’ Trophy that made big moves to get to an even higher level, took some time to see those changes gel, almost missed the playoffs, and then went on a postseason run that almost nobody saw coming even though we should have. They’re everything that’s great about the Stanley Cup playoffs. This rules.

Unless it doesn’t. Maybe they’re just the latest in a worrying long list of playoff flukes – bad teams that luck their way into a few series wins before inevitably losing in the final. Put them there with the 2021 Habs, the 2017 Predators, the 2010 Flyers, the 2006 Oilers… we see this every few years in the cap era. Hell, a brand-new expansion team made it all the way to the final a few years ago. The NHL playoffs are just random chaos that doesn’t tell us anything at all, and the Panthers are the latest proof. This sucks.

Unless it doesn’t. And around and around I go.

I’m tired of it. So today, I want to figure it out. And like every other annoying internet dweeb, I’m going to get to the bottom of things with two simple words: Debate me. Specifically, I’m going to debate… me.

What can we learn from the Florida Panthers, if anything at all? Let’s see if I can figure this out by arguing with myself.

>> Read the full post at The Athletic

(Want to read this post on The Athletic for free? Sign up for a free trial.)

No comments:

Post a Comment