In Hakstol we trust? What choice do we have. After more tough love being shown in the form of both Konecny and Ghost being healthy scratches, we are forced to stand behind this team no matter what.
So much has been said about why Hakstol does not like to scratch someone like Macdonald but often scratches players like Ghost and Konecny. I liken Hakstol to that of a parent, he grounds someone like Ghost because he sees the potential and knows he can do better. He does not expect better from Macdonald and views him as a lost cause.
We all love watching the little 19 year old Konecny play, but he has to learn that this is not the juniors. When I watch this kid play, I see someone who can and will be great, but he needs to get passed this learning curve. I honestly believe that this is the right move, it sucks, but it’s right. Turning 20 in March, the Flyers are in no rush to have him play every game if he is not ready, though the experience is valuable.
Shayne Gostisbehere, who turns 24 in April, is right now in the middle of his second season as a full-time NHL player. After having an absolutely awesome rookie season where he finished second in voting for the Calder Memorial Trophy, the sophomore slump is real with this one. After finishing last season with 46 points and a +/- of 8, Ghost is on pace for a bad drop off. In 48 games this season, Ghost has 21 points and a +/- of -19. Big drop difference. Defense is an incredibly tough position to play (well, there is no easy position) but Ghost needs to overcome the mental aspect so he can succeed.
I stand behind Hakstol, he benches them BECAUSE HE CARES AND KNOWS THEY CAN DO BETTER. If anything, we should be worried if he did not think they could do better. The Philadelphia sports scene is all about trusting the process, and the Flyers are no exception.