Deja vu’s something that has stricken the Delaware Valley’s sports fanbase more often than not. The arsenal of bad experiences has been haunting Philadelphia sports fans for years. Injuries, lost championships, bad trades and awful draft picks are all things the city of brotherly love and its fans have had to deal with more than once. Well, brace yourself, folks. It happened again.
It didn’t take long for word to get out that Steven Stamkos would be unable to play in the Olympics, and if you asked anybody who knows anything about hockey they probably told you that the Philadelphia Flyers‘ captain, Claude Giroux would be his replacement. Instead, it’s long time Tampa Bay Lightning veteran Martin St. Louis. Was Giroux snubbed again? There’s no doubt about it. Let’s play a little game of numbers don’t lie.
Many blame the passing of Giroux on his cold start to the season. In his first 15 games of the season he only managed to tally seven assists. On his 16th game of the year, he was finally able to find the net. So, let’s compare the numbers since that 16th game. Including it, Giroux has been able to average more than a point per game. He’s racked up 48 points (18G 30A) in 42 games. St. Louis, on the other hand hand, has averaged less than a point per game. He’s totaled 38 points (18G 20A) in 41 games. In the season’s total, despite his cold start, Giroux has still managed to get one more point recorded than St. Louis.
People are trying to argue the strength of the supporting casts as well, claiming that Philadelphia has a much stronger scoring system. That’s not the case at all. Philadelphia’s top five scorers have only totaled 80 goals, but Tampa Bay’s top-five scorers have 86 goals. That doesn’t include Stamkos by the way.
An outraged Philadelphia fanbase has been claiming that Sidney Crosby is urging Team Canada‘s officials to keep Giroux from the squad. As we all know from past games, those two don’t get along at all, but please, that’s ridiculous.
It is interesting, however, that Steve Yzerman just so happens to be the general manager of Tampa Bay and an executive member of Team Canada. Coincidence? Maybe. Perhaps Yzerman is just playing favorites.
Fear not, Flyers fans. Just be happy that Giroux won’t risk injury, and for those of you who aren’t Canadian you can now whole-heartedly root against Canada.
Just a fun fact: No team has ever won gold in the Olympics without a Flyers player on the roster.