The first in an occasional series, in which Flyers Faithful scans the papers of the opposition to see how they’re portraying events.
We make no assurance of journalistic integrity here.
On Thursday, with the Flyers and Sabres deadlocked at two games apiece, we have our first instance of Buffalo head coach Lindy Ruff going to the papers and complaining about what the other team is complaining about.
Ruff generally slips into this mode any time he senses his team is about to lose the actual edge on the ice, which, in his 14 year tenure, has been about a zillion times.
It’s a familiar trope. “We’re the little ol’ Sabres buried up here in upstate New York, we don’t get no respect, we don’t get no calls because the big bad (insert major market team here)s are protected by the NHL blah blah blah…”
Today’s edition: Whining/Officiating. From the Buffalo News.
“I just feel that there’s a lot of whining,” the Sabres’ coach said in HSBC Arena. “They’re really doing a lot of whining. I didn’t hear any whining when they had 10 power plays in Philly, and I didn’t hear them whining when the power plays in the first game were lopsided. But all of sudden there’s all this whining about we’re getting away with murder. That’s a bunch of crap. That’s for the media. That’s for the officials to read. That’s for, ‘Here, let’s get the next call.’ It’s a bunch of crap. Let’s just play.”
OK…so then…whining about the Flyers’ whining isn’t for the media? (unofficial count of “whining” now at eight)
I also don’t recall Peter Laviolette whining (9) that the Sabres had exactly one less power play on Saturday than the Flyers.
Then again, it’s tough to evaluate logic from a guy who:
A) Nearly blinded Brian Propp late in the 1985-86 season with a blatant high stick (which ruined his best shot to have a 100-point season).
B) Publicly called-out the foibles of the NHL rulebook and officiating at a Losers Parade (Brett Hull, 1999), and still holds a grudge because of John LeClair’s shot that went through the side of the net (2000).
C) Did the same thing all throughout the 2006 and 2007 playoffs to get his vastly more stacked and skilled teams the advantage throughout the Carolina, Ottawa and New York Rangers series those years.
Is Lindy all out of actual motivational techniques? Maybe so, because his goaltender has been personally responsible for Buffalo’s two wins thus far, and maybe he’s whistling past the graveyard because a non-defending Vezina Trophy winner at the other crease is in danger of outdueling his dear old Captain America.
We of the faifthul know what’s up. There is a conspiracy, as old as the Expansion Era itself.
The Flyers worked long and hard to break free of the prejudices towards Boston, Montreal and Toronto in the 1970s, and now that they have become an established franchise, the NHL still won’t let us have peace because there are old men locked away in a smoke-filled room whose lingering senile memories of the Broad Street Bullies are clearer than what they had for lunch.
Take a number Lindy, the Flyers have a more legitimate beef. They’ve been kept away from the Stanley Cup for 36 years. Your team has only been denied for just over a decade.