Depth is the key ingredient to a championship recipe. If one player gets injured, the question becomes, “who is the next man up?” Against the Boston Bruins, Jeremy Lauzon’s questionable hit on Michael Raffl cost the Philadelphia Flyers. Raffl, who was the offensive player of the game, crashed into the boards as his legs swept out from underneath him. According to Alain Vigneault, Raffl “won’t be available for a little bit.” The next man up? None other than Joel Farabee.
During the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs, surrounding the unique circumstances of COVID-19, the NHL protocol for injury announcements does not allow teams to release specific information. Michael Raffl’s left foot does bend the opposite way it should from his knee. There is not any update that he has a ligament tear, a broken bone, or if it is a high degree sprain. When the injury took place, Raffl was not able to put any weight on his left leg and needed help to get up from the ice. The only good news is that he did not seem to be in any excruciating pain.
Another playoff debut
What is next is another Philadelphia Flyers playoff debut. That player who will make his playoff debut is Joel Farabee against the Washington Capitals. In 2019-2020, Farabee played in two games against the Capitals. Having some experience against this franchise helps because he is familiar. In comparison, Michael Raffl would have been the better decision against this franchise.
That is not bashing Joel Farabee by any means. When he is on the ice against the Washington Capitals, he does not allow them to score. Through two games, Farabee has a neutral plus-minus. Michael Raffl has found his way on the stat sheet in three out of four games against the Capitals. With how that the Philadelphia Flyers are playing, Farabee has a sound opportunity to make his playoff debut count.
Joel Farabee is poised to make an impression against the Washington Capitals. Before the Philadelphia Flyers left for Toronto, he commented on how comfortable he was with Alain Vigneault’s system:
“This is kind of like my second training camp. I knew the systems coming in. I feel a lot more comfortable out there as far as making small little tight plays and stuff like that. Even passes, I’m not really stressing too much on my stick. I think just the comfortability of it is really good in my head.”Joel Farabee; 7/27/2020
In training camp, the Philadelphia Flyers mantra was to “stay ready.” Joel Farabee has done that. With focused preparation comes opportunity, which is what he has against the Washington Capitals.
Photo Credit: Alex Mcintyre