Archive for Cold War

We’ll be Reagan, You be Gorbachev

Posted in Sports with tags , , , , , on January 21, 2008 by bsbp

Let’s take a moment and appreciate the article written by Rob Rossi and Joe Starkey of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review for the Sunday edition. A fantastic piece as a hot Flyers team prepares to take on an at-the-moment Crosby-less Penguins later in the week. While some of the facts are slightly askew, it’s nothing short of fantastic, it gets the blood going and makes you remember exactly why you hate Pittsburgh. We certainly couldn’t count on our favorite ‘wooden boy’ too churn out this kind of piece, well; we probably could since it seems Geppetto’s son is nothing if not overly critical and inaccurate of the Flyers.

Let’s get into the meat of this bit of yellow journalism. Michel Therrien is a joke. The guy didn’t seem to mind using Crosby, Staal and Malkin in late game PP situations late year, and certainly didn’t mind running the score up on the disadvantaged Fly-guys. That he had, or more likely lacked, the stones to complain when on the opposite end is the punch line to a bad joke. That may be one of the only things Ben Eager got right this season.

December 11, 2007. The game that saw Sidney Crosby slewfoot Martin Biron and Georges Laraque slide blades first at him moments later. The game indeed included 156 minutes in penalties, 98 of them charged to the Penguins. Heading into the 3rd period the score 5-2 Philadelphia, the Penguins managed to rack up 81 minutes and not a single goal. The Flyers added 45 minutes to their total, and 3 more goals. If calling the coach of a team who goes the ‘petulant child’ route “a joke” isn’t accurate, maybe calling it Crosby Hockey™ would make it more palatable? But let’s enjoy some of the ‘Cold War’ moments as described.

 Defenseman Darius Kasparaitis joined former Penguin Ulf Samuelsson and Steelers legend Jack Lambert in the Pittsburgh Hall of Pain when he felled 6-foot-4, 240-pound Flyers star Eric Lindros with a thunderous hit March 7, 1998, at the Civic Arena. They called it the Kaspar Krunch. A sellout crowd cheered manically as Lindros crawled along the ice.

No doubt something to be proud of, one can only wonder how they’ll play up Sid’s teeth getting busted, right?

The game that rekindled this rivalry was won by the player Flyers fans have grown to hate more than any other (including Eric Lindros). Crosby spent much of Nov. 16, 2005, absorbing head shots from defenseman Derian Hatcher, who broke three of Crosby’s teeth. By overtime, Crosby had turned into Sid Vicious. His sweater stained in blood, he scored the winner on a broken-toothed breakaway with 46.7 seconds remaining in overtime.

Love it. Lindros the slain Titan, Crosby the struggling against the odds hero. I wouldn’t want anything less in an article like this, what I want is a local guy who’s going to do the same thing from the Flyers perspective. Where did the guys who love the game go?

While there are a few inaccuracies like the Flyers picking 3rd in the 1990 draft, The Flyers drafted 4th guys, taking Mike Ricci after Owen Nolan – QUE, Petr Nedved – VAN and Keith Primeau – DET. Quickie about the 1990 draft, 5 of the top 10 players in that draft have dressed for the Flyers. The only thing that should really rub a Flyers fan the wrong way comes at the back end of the article.

“Most Penguins fans have forgotten about center Kent Manderville, acquired from the Flyers on March 17, 2002. However, that trade was actually one of Craig Patrick’s finest as Penguins GM, if for no other reason that it sent troubled forward Billy Tibbetts to the Flyers, thus completing the most perfect marriage in hockey history.”

Billy Tibbets and the Flyers are the most perfect marriage in Flyers history? No, seriously? Coming from a team who gave up with 20 minutes left and the most ‘dynamic, amazing, superb’ hockey player in the NHL to slewfoot a goalie and then baseball slide at him? Sounds like Billy Tibbets might have been giving the ‘Gipper Speech’ during the second intermission in the Pens locker room. Taking the moral high-road after boy wonder cheaps the goalie and your goon hides behind race and Jackie Robinson for his Baseball slide?! I think you’ve missed the mark fellas. Clearly the ‘most perfect’ marriage in NHL history has been the union of Sidney Crosby and Pittsburgh, a team with a history of flopping on the ice to gain draft advantages and Sidney Crosby an Olympic diver of a hockey superstar.

The Flyers have been beset with injuries all season, so if we can walk away with anything, let’s walk away with an understanding that no matter the outcome, there will be no crying because Sid wasn’t there. Sound reasonable? Or should we get the timeout corner ready?

Sidebar:The article’s sidebar features the Penguins and Flyers All-Time Teams:
Barrasso – Coffey – Carlyle – Crosby – Lemieux – Jagr with Bob Johnson.
Parent – Desjardins – Howe – Clarke – Lindros – Barber with Fred Shero.
I like the Flyers chances against that soft core for the Pens. 😉