The Caps STILL Don't Like the Flyers
When I talked to Rod Langway a few weeks back, I asked him whether he still has ill feelings toward Pittsburgh and Philly, the two teams Caps fans most love to hate.
"I'm not a fan of Philly," he said, "but I respect them."
Not a fan?
"Just the way they're coached and the way they are," he continued, "but I respect them. They've got a great reputation. I would probably love to play there, but playing there was one of the toughest [trips], going all through the lineup. Pittsburgh was nowhere as tough as Philly."
It's amazing how certain teams manage to preserve their reputations across eras and generations, even as the names change. The Bears are still about defense. The Lakers are still about offense. The Yankees are still about cash. And the Flyers are still about that certain something Langway was getting at. He called it toughness. Alexander Semin called it something else, in a recent Sovetsky Sport interview translated at On Frozen Blog.
Semin was asked which team he least wants to face in the playoffs. The correct answer is, "We're not even thinking about that, we're just trying to finish the regular season strong and even get INTO the playoffs. I don't watch the TV or read the newspapers or look at the standings, I couldn't even tell you which teams are possibilities. I might as well be reading the phone book right now, because you know damn well I'm not gonna give you a good quote out of this."
Semin, instead, went with this: "The Philadelphia Flyers. They are nasty."
"They are running, knocking around," he continued, in translation. "[We don't have] our game with them, but there's some kind of wrestle. Although last season we had a good chance to pass Philadelphia. Remember? We made it to game 7 in the first round. And then let a goal in overtime. A little bit unlucky."
I mean, take the Philadelphia Flyers in virtually any decade, and there's some kind of wrestle. It's remarkable, really.
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