A Flyers Fan Guide to Picking a Bandwagon – Eastern Conference

Photo by Heather Barry

It’s important to pick an allegiance going into the playoffs with the Flyers heading to their respective golf courses. But picking a bandwagon to jump onto out of a handful of rival teams can be difficult, especially since we know they’re really all garbage even if we are rooting for them. So I’m putting together a little guide that may make it easier for you to pick which team you’ll be rooting for to upset all the other teams we don’t like. 

Picking a bandwagon to hitch on to in the Eastern Conference will be a bit easier than the Western Conference because of the few teams that can be immediately eliminated. We’ll go through them together and talk about why you should or should not root for each team. None of this has anything to do with statistical analysis or regular season performance.

Pittsburgh Penguins 

They won the Cup last season after everyone thought Sidney Crosby had hit a Lecavalier-esque wall in his career. They are the defending Champs and are heavily favored to repeat once the Capitals choke in the 2nd round, and I hope they see a 1st round exit. They are still the absolute worst and you should not get on this bandwagon. Respect the rivalry, please. If you’re thinking about rooting for the Pittsburgh Penguins in the slightest capacity, I don’t know what to tell you. I’m not going to call you a fake fan – you do you – but it’s obvious that you have to take a good hard look at yourself. You may be making a bunch of other terrible choices in your life and you should probably see someone about that.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – I’m trusting everyone in Philadelphia is on the same page here. No

Columbus Blue Jackets

The Columbus Blue Jackets are a bit of a surprise this season. When an alien came down to earth and assumed John Tortorella’s identity and responsibilities as head coach, the Jackets were able to dominate the Metro division under a new progressive coach. They slipped off the top of the mountain recently, but there’s no reason to think they aren’t still pretty good. The Blue Jackets have a bunch of connections to Philly in players that we wish never had to leave. Sergei Bobrovsky ran away because the Flyers favored Ilya Bryzgalov, proving that being an asshole to goalies is just something that comes with the job of Flyers GM. Sam Gagner probably could have been useful on the Flyers if the head coach could actually evaluate talent and use players effectively. Scott Hartnell, while a bit problematic recently, was a Philadelphia favorite. There are plenty of reasons to jump on the Blue Jackets bandwagon and ignore the people who inexplicably want them to lose.

Seriously though, someone should go find the real Tortorella.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – Yes. If you say no please explain.

Toronto Maple Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs are so goddamn young. I’m pretty sure their oldest player is 17. After being just the right shade of mediocre to not win anything, but also not get amazing draft position for like…years, the Maple Leafs have finally found the winning formula; send all your dumb expensive players to fade in the AHL. The Leafs are an exciting team to watch and will definitely have you calling for Ron Hextall to dump every single player over the age of 25 in favor of the prospects. Apparently, Toronto fans are super annoying and not deserving of happiness, I wouldn’t know. I’ve only ever been exposed to some dork named Steve Dangle. It does feel like the Leafs have had similar pains as the Flyers in ways that I’ve only gathered through years of podcast listening ( I can’t go over reasons, I have shit memory). The Leafs are fun, I see nothing wrong with hopping on this bandwagon, even though it probably won’t go too far this year.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – If you can distance yourself from actual Toronto fans, yes.

Washington Capitals

This is finally the Capitals year and yes it is very different from the last 5-10 times that it was also their year! I would rather watch the Capitals get swept in the first round by the Leafs than watch the Washington team celebrate anything. That’s just me tough. The Capitals, deserve to win the Cup this year, according to most people. We could finally stop calling Alex Ovechkin “The best player to never win a cup” or we could watch them blow it in the 2nd round again. The Caps added Kevin Shattenkirk to their blueline which could push them over the edge, but he is probably gone next season. This could be Washington’s last year of complete dominance.

When the Caps are eliminated, we can send a VHS of their loss to Barry Trotz.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – No

Montreal Canadiens

With Carey Price back to being Carey Price, the Canadiens could go right on along hiding all of their issues behind Price’s stellar goaltending. Then they went out on the trade deadline and added Jordie Benn, who is I guess okay, but they also added Steve Ott who is a steaming pile of hot garbage. For that reason alone they should lose. Yes they finally fired Michele Therrien, who ran PK Subban out of town, but come on, they added Steve Ott. This organization is still a bit mismanaged and nothing will be resolved until they can’t hide behind Carey Price.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? Fuck Steve Ott. No.

New York Rangers

The Rangers were supposed to be bad. Henrik Lundqvist is still there being Henrrik Lundqvist and making up for any other roster issues the Rangers have. It’s like rooting for the Canadiens, except with more patriotism and less Steve Ott. The Rangers are on the downswing and after years of being really good, are expected to start being really bad. If there’s one reason to actually root for the Rangers it’s Henrik Lundqvist who has never won a Stanley Cup. It’s not a great reason, but if you’re looking for one, there it is I guess.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – Probably won’t last very long. No

Ottawa Senators

Haha what? The Senators aren’t in the Playoffs. You’re kidding, right? You’re not.

Photo by Heather Barry

The Senators don’t seem like a legitimate threat. I could be dead wrong, they could beat the Bruins and shock a few people, but how likely are they to get past the 2nd round? They’ve got Cherry Hill New Jersey Native Bobby Ryan if that matters to you. They’ve also got Tumblr sweetheart Erik Karlsson. Karlsson is dragging that team along with everything he’s got, but who knows when the Senators captain won’t be enough? It would be great to see them blow through the first two rounds though.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – If you are obsessed with underdog stories then yes.

Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins were supposed to be bad. Brad Marchand is going insane this season racking up 85 points, but he’s also a pile of shit. I, personally would like to see the Bruins get taken down in the first round. I have no information to sway you either way.

Should you get on this Bandwagon? – Listen to your heart.

 

Final Decision: Columbus or Toronto

Honestly, I forgot that the Bruins/Senators matchup was happening. That means one of those two teams will probably go to the Final.

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