Philadelphia Flyers forward Oskar Lindblom will once again take pre-game warmup with his team this evening when they take on the New York Islanders in Game 5 of their second round Stanley Cup Playoff series. Lindblom is doubtful to join the team for the game, but the Flyers haven't ruled out the possibility playing Game 6 or Game 7 should the series go the distance. The Flyers, of course, have their backs against the wall and are facing elimination at the hands of the Islanders this evening.
Check it out:
Incredible. Just the fact that this kid can lace up the skates and go for a twirl around the ice with his teammates is an accomplishment in itself. It's been eight and a half months since Lindblom was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma a rare form of bone cancer. The diagnosis effectively ended Lindblom's season back in December, but he has progressed fantastically and in early July he completed his chemotherapy treatments. It remains to be seen if he'll get any game action in these playoffs because... well because frankly the possibility lies fully in the hands of his teammates. If the Flyers can force a Game 6 or a Game 7, there's a possibility that Lindblom sees some action.
The fact of the matter though is that the Flyers have simply not been up to snuff in their series against the Isles. The Isles under head coach Barry Trotz have just found a way to grind and have forced the Flyers to play a tough, gritty, defensive game that's played mostly along the sideboards and in the corners. If the Flyers can find a way to get out of the muck and into some open ice, they'll generate some offence but so far in this series those opportunities have been few and far between.
The truth of the matter is that the Flyers need some of their veteran leaders to step up. Captain Claude Giroux has just one goal in his last 23 playoff games and just three goals in his last 30 playoff games. He has just five assists in 13 post-season games this summer. That's obviously not going to cut it. If the Flyers are going to get Lindblom into a game or two, they'll need players like Giroux to step it up this evening.