WHO DO DIE HARD FLYERS FANS REALLY DESPISE IN OUR OWN DIVISION?

SEP 29, 2022  (0H49)      DAVID MCLEOD
As a loyal and dedicated Philadelphia Flyers fan, it is only normal to openly loath and mock players from opposing teams, especially rivals in your own division.
Heading into the season I'll give my self-proclaimed expert analysis on each teams most despised player and the reason behind why fans simply cannot stand them.

1. Carolina Hurricanes - aside from loathing every player who actively partakes in the annoying and painfully lame Storm Surge after a home win; whether that be falling like dominoes, playing dodgeball, having a limbo competition, etc., my individual nod goes to Jesperi Kotkaniemi. Kotkaniemi was drafted third overall by the Montreal Canadiens, who lost him after he made headlines in the 2020 playoffs. Kotkaniemi posted an electric 5 goals and 3 assists in 19 playoff games and in the eyes of the media, that solidified him as one of the greatest playoff performers of a generation. Kotkaniemi rode that undeserving hype into signing an offer sheet with Carolina for $6.1 million, which Montreal wisely scoffed at. In four seasons, Kotkaniemi has posted 34, 8, 20, and 29 points respectively and despite those pedestrian totals, he appears to have an incredible chip on his shoulder. He believes he is one of the NHL's elite. Carolina fell for the false bravado and inked the third liner to a max contract, at eight years $4.85 million dollars. Too bad Uncle Buck wasn't around to take care of Kotkaniemi; somebody needs to flip him a quarter.

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2. Columbus Blue Jackets - It could be easy to throw shade at Johnny Gaudreau, for allowing Flyers fans to speculate and fully believe he would sign with Flyers as a free agent, but that debacle falls on Chuck Fletcher. Let Johnny Hockey waste away in relative obscurity, with the irrelevant Blue Jackets, who's fans are more captivated with the firing of a cannon than being an actual Cup contender. Patrick Laine is the player you love to hate in Columbus. Laine is a one way floater, who won't go anywhere near a greasy area, but he still has the ability to snipe from anywhere on the ice and win games. That annoying combination, paired with his trademark smirk and NBA style attire, makes ones blood boil.


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3. New Jersey Devils - Nico Hischier, plain and simple. Every time he steps on the ice against us I can't help but think, what could have been. If New Jersey didn't select Nico first overall and instead selected Nolan Patrick, who would the Flyers have selected? Would Hextall's «gut decision» about Patrick been irrelevant? Would Hextall have swallowed his pride, listened to the overwhelming majority of his scouts, and drafted generational talent Cale Makar? It's painful to even think about.

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4. New York Islanders - The Islanders haven't been a legitimate threat in the NHL since the mid 1980's, so developing animosity towards anyone in there lineup is difficult because you feel sorry for them. Darius Kasparaitis was the last dirty, low bridge hitting, antagonistic, turtle who fit the mold for the Islanders. As far a current roster player who may irk Flyers fans, the closest I can come up with is Matt Martin, for no other reason than he tends to take a few liberties on the forecheck with late and questionable hits. Does anybody know of any Islanders fans outside of their geographical area??

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5. New York Rangers - The Rags easily have the most overrated and annoying player in the Metro Division; likely the entire league. Ryan Reaves is that guy. Averaging 7 points a season, mostly in mop up minutes or blowout games, Reaves thinks and acts like he's the star of the show and a main ticket sales generator for the NHL. I believe he perceives himself as the main attraction, but if you hit up the snack bar, line up or a pint, or even sneak to the washroom, you'll miss Reaves on the ice. Reaves averages about 8-9 minutes of ice a night and rides pine in all key situations; on power plays, killing penalties, or late in the game. The self-proclaimed heavy weight champion earns his pay as an enforcer, but over the past four years has been in three fights each season. Since the camera rarely catches a glimpse of Reaves on the ice, excluding warmup, any chance Reaves has to grab the spotlight off the ice, he salivates over. Please retire and end the gong show, that is your career.


6. Philadelphia Flyers - now that Keith «-47» Yandle has retired James Van Riemsdyk. Not even debatable.

7. Pittsburgh Penguins - Picking Sidney Crosby over Evgeni Malkin was a surprisingly difficult decision, as any Flyers fan could attest. The NHL poster boy has been the bane of Flyers fans existence for almost two decades and has maddened an entire fan base. The whining, the diving, the uncalled slashes, the dirty cross checks, cowering behind teammates, tainted Stanley Cups, the flopping, owning the refs, getting cheese calls with his patented head snap and comical overreactions; Sidney Crosby is the one player who can incense an entire fan base by merely mentioning his name, seeing a picture of him, watching a commercial with his greasy mug in it, or seeing him on an ad. I take it back, Sidney Crosby eclipses Ryan Reaves in a heartbeat, as the most loathed player in the Metro division and NHL. What's worse than Crosby's continuous antics, is the fact he has consistently avoided any supplementary discipline from the league, because they don't want the negative publicity or to upset their golden child.
The following YouTube clip mocks the NHL, by comparing Marchand's list of suspensions, substituting Crosby clips in of the same nature (which he has miraculously escaped punishment for).


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8. Washington Capitals - T O M. W I L S O N.
Except for the actions taken in the photo below!

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