For years now, all I’ve heard about is how great the L&L Flyers hockey club (now known as the Flyers Athletic club K, or FACK) is. Always winning, great crew of guys, everything seemed perfect. But being the respected blogger I am (as most bloggers are), I knew there had to be some dirt I could dig up on this team. So I went undercover, disguised as a guy who could barely play hockey anymore to find out the real truth.
As expected, the on ice product with the Flyers has been tremendous once again this season. After dropping the season opener in Lashburn, the Flyers have rattled off 8 straight. But with success, power struggles ensue.
The issue of the number 1 goaltender has been a hot one in the room of late. Dustin Harvie opened the season as the clear cut number 1 guy between the pipes. Harvie was solid through the first 4 regular season games, capturing the FACK belt after a stellar performance on November 15th.
But controversy arose after Harvie inexcusably left the team on December 6th. You hear every kind of rumour as to why this took place. A sale on Jordan’s, a sale on pictures of different people wearing Jordan’s, a sale on skinny jeans, you hear it all. Nobody can figure out why, but Harvie was M.I.A. for 2 games.
In his absence, Chad Elliott was the Mike Condon to his Carey Price. Yes, a no name, pretty awful goaltender just like Condon, went between the pipes and not only exceeded expectations but created a goaltending controversy.
Elliott stood on his head, but that wasn’t without it’s share of controversy either, in particular after the first start when Elliott…who was the recipient of the FACK heavyweight title on November 22nd, decided he need not give it up after the game on December 6th there for becoming the first ever back to back winner. This didn’t sit well with some on the squad. Said one anonymous player “Who the f**k does this guy think he is?! Giving HIMSELF the belt?! I’m Jordy f**kin Dougan and every night I’m the best player on the ice yet he gives himself the belt over me…keep this between us though Soups.”
After the December 9th game there was much deliberation as the whom to go with for the December 13th showdown in Lashburn. The horribly named Molson Muscle were on the docket and FACK need to go with their number 1 guy. Harvie got the nod.
With limited work thanks to rock solid defensive play, particularly in the 2nd half of the game with Kayne Rowley and Casey Phipps benched, the Flyers won easily. But then came last nights game in Hillmond and Harvie was once again out, this time with an upper body injury (bad hair cut). So once again Elliott was back between the pipes.
THIS time around however, Elliott really dropped the ball. The Flyers definitely didn’t need good goaltending in this affair as Casey Phipps was a man on a mission, out to prove that he was the best player on the ice as he led the Flyers to a 27-4 drubbing of the Bea Fisher centre.
So heading into the Christmas break it has become apparent that Harvie can’t be relied on to show up, and Elliott can’t be relied on to stop a change up. Meanwhile there is also a controversy brewing between the club and star Jordy Dougan.
Dougan has been in the midst of contract negotiations with the Hillmond Hitmen, yet with no out clause in his deal with the Flyers he is forced to play with both clubs. Dougan shone for the lowly Hitmen over the weekend, yet struggled to keep up to the pace while back with the Flyers on Sunday.
To make matters worse, life long Hitmen fan Lee Caretaker joined the Flyers post game celebration, and he didn’t really come off as much of a Dougan fan. So it remains to be seen if Dougan can A) pull double duty and B) play 2 completely different styles.
The Hitmen’s system is a lot more simple of game than the Flyers. The Flyers have a good 50-60 breakouts they run, continually switch from man to zone coverage in their own zone, and always keep the opposition on their heels defensively by a style that can only be described as controlled chaos offensively at times sending 5 men in deep but fooling the opposition by not forechecking, and at times by only sending 1 man in….and not forechecking.
Then there was the infamous tampering incident between brothers Henrik and Daniel Rogers. In the Marwayne game on December 9th, Henrik, disguised as island escapism leader James Buffett, led the team to a big win over the Imperials which of course landed him the FACK title. But failing to carry the disguise over to the Lashburn game that Sunday, Henrik was outed while giving brother Daniel the belt in yet another decision that didn’t sit well with the Flyers board of trustees. All that was missing was one of the spray painting RWO (Rogers World Order) on the belt, it was that much of a screw job.
As for myself, I’m pretty sure I’ve maintained my cover. Everyone is in the dark and actually buys that I’m this horrendous player who has barely played since retiring from the Sask-Alta in late 2001 due to multiple knee and elbow contusions.
Will I be able to keep up this charade the rest of the season? That remains to be seen. But I can already see more issues on the horizon such as the captaincy of the club between Tyce Lowrie and Tyson Pihowich, the return of “Kranky Kayne”, GM Jesse Gruepner’s alcohol issues, Sam Sayeed’s connection to ISIS, and of course…the cuts that will have to be made for the tournament in Wainwright.
It’s a grueling season that promises to be one like any other, and we’re only halfway home.