Matt B is a diehard Flyers Fan and blogger from New Jersey. He runs the funny Flyers blog, Down Goes Spezza. He can also spews his comedic talents on Twitter as well. He has provided us with his five reasons he loves the Flyers.
1. The Legion of Doom
I’m turning 22 during the first week of the 2010-2011 campaign making me far too young to remember the days of the original Broad St. Bullies, but I grew up with these guys. My first memories as a kid of hockey involved watching the Legion of Doom destroy everything during the 1996-97 season. I remember worshiping the ice these guys skated on. It was during that season that I got NHL97 as a gift for Christmas, and I remember playing everyday as the Flyers and just beating every team with these guys. It was then that I knew, hockey was the greatest the game on Earth and the Flyers would be my team.
2. Eric Desjardins
For as much as the Legion of Doom made me fall in love with watching hockey, it was watching Eric Desjardins play that made me want to play hockey. I was a defenseman and I wanted to be just like Rico. Both of us were already right shots and since there are so few right shooting blue liners, I wanted to be like the one I saw. Like Rico, I’m not the biggest guy out there, but I perfected my hands and always made sure to move the puck well. I didn’t have a rocket shot from the point, but it was good enough and I racked up power play assists from the blue line. Sure I never became an NHL superstar, or ever played professionally in any way, but I had a hell of a lot of fun along the way.
3. Jim Jackson
Jim Jackson, or more affectionately to every Flyers fan, JJ made me excited to tune into Flyers games as a kid, and to this day hearing him call games reminds me of how great the game and the Flyers are. If you listen to JJ call a game, you can’t ever take any other announcer seriously again. JJ is as much Flyers hockey, in my opinion, as Lauren Hart, Bobby Clarke, or any other great player/coach/GM the team has ever had. JJ, to me, will always be Flyers hockey.
4. The Team Always Sticking Up For Their Own
No picture for this one, but rather a quote from Steve Coates. “Don’t you think a Mr. Hatcher or Mr. Smith would have had something to say about that.” He was referring to Sean Avery’s actions during the 2008 playoffs when Avery screened Martin Brodeur with his stick and no Devils player did anything to Avery. This got me thinking, the team has ALWAYS stuck up for the skill players. Everyone knows, if you touch a Flyers skill player, someone is gonna tap you on the shoulder and beat you down for it, no questions asked. If Avery tried to screen Biron in 2008, there’s no doubt that Avery would have been beaten to a pulp by Smith/Hatcher/Hartnell. Another example of this comes from the way the Flyers went after the Senators and Martin Havlat in 2004. Yes that game, the game that supplied the Sharp/Spezza fight from which my blog takes its name.
5. The Flyers Fans
The energy the fans bring to the Wells Fargo Center is just amazing. There’s nothing quite like it and I have a hard time putting it into words. Long story short, the fans are a reason I am PROUD the call myself a Flyers fan. I love the energy, the attitude and the dedication to WINNING.
It’s these 5 reasons (and many others) that I still love the Flyers to this day. I had a major Flyers identity crisis recently (some time in the last 3 seasons) with the acquisition of a player whom I have issues with. A few close personal friends of mine know this player, and have always said that he is an arrogant, egotistical snob, when the Flyers acquired this player recently, I seriously considered switching alliances to another team, but then I realized, if this player still has the attitude he had when he knew my friends, then he would not be long for the team and therefore I should trust that things would work out. They have as the Flyers came so close to winning it all and are hopefully ready to make another run at Lord Stanley’s Cup in the 2010-11 campaign. With that, I leave you, with a video of one of my favorite Flyers playoff moments.
The Five Reasons to Love the Flyers feature was inspired by the Five Reasons I Love Hockey feature on the Puck Daddy blog. This column should run biweekly on Thursdays. If you are a diehard Flyers fan and would like to submit your list of reasons to love the Flyers, contact us.