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"All Geeked-Up for the Deadline..."
Newtown Square, PA • United States • 45 Years Old • Male


In the days leading up to the World Series clinching victory for the Philadelphia Phillies, websites like StubHug, Ebay, etc... were purportedly selling very good seats at Citizen's Bank Park for upwards of $2,000. I don't care who you are or how much you make, that is a lot of cash for 27 outs. Fox showed a banged out Citizen's Bank Park so, obviously, people stepped up and gladly payed exorbitant sums to be a part of something magical.

As a part of The Bullwinkle Show, a cultured dog - Peabody - and his pet boy, Sherman, took magical trips throughout history in a segment known as Peabody's improbable History. The medium of their time tripping jaunts was none other than The Wayback Machine. The Wayback Machine allowed Peabody and Sherman to right the supposed wrongs of history so that it might come out like you read in history books.

In an attempt to be a part of something magical, I'll let you play the part of Peabody and set the Wayback Machine to see any team or player in hockey history...but it's going to cost you - $$. Who or what team would you spend your hard-earned huevos rancheros to go and see, in any time or place, in your current hockey state of awareness??? (i.e. see the horrid Vancouver Canucks sweaters from the early '80s in action as you are now on November 3, 2008).

Have fun with this...


Three choices seem obvious ones for me.

While the first is during the glory days of "the Fog" and the back-to-back Cup winning Broad Street Bullies, it was not the Cups themselves that I would spend my clams to see. My dollars would go to purchase a ticket for a game played on January 11, 1976, when the Philadelphia Flyers squared off in a titanic meeting against the Red Army Hockey Team - widely considered the best team on the planet. The Red Army team would go on to win the Russian Championship for the next 13 years over a span from 1977 to 1989. This Russian team came into Philadelphia having defeated every NHL team it had faced, except for tying its match with the Montreal Canadiens.

The Soviets were a dynasty and took these "exhibition" games versus NHL talent as anything but a mere game. What was on the line went far beyond sport and delved into national identity, ideological superiority and a Cold War-gone-hot on a chilly night in South Philadelphia. This was a contrast in styles as much as it was about ideologies. The Flyers were a rough and tumble bunch, though while very skilled, liked to mix things up and dictate the tempo with ferocious hitting. The Russians were a skilled team bent on destruction with a lightning transition game and a stellar goaltender, Vadislav Tretiak. The Orange and Black had their own star quality netminder in the person of Bernie Parant. The Flyers wanted to make a statement - "Not in my country and certainly not in my town."

The thing I would really want to see for my money was the hit laid on Valeri Kharlamov - see Bobby Clarke Summit Series, 1972 - by Flyers' defensive great, Ed Van Impe. Kharlamov "rested" on the ice for nearly a minute and caused the Russian coach to pull his team from the ice in protest of a lack of a penalty call. Can you imagine how loud the Spectrum would have been as the Red Army team left the ice???

Not only would that be awesome to witness, but also the response of the Flyers as they scored once the game resumed under the shouted threat of Ed Snider not paying for the series if they did not return to the ice. The Flyers won the game 4-1, beat the hated Russians and dealt a crushing blow to the Goliath of international hockey. I think Ed Snider is still smiling.



The second would be not a team or a game, necessarily, but a moment in time. The scene was the 1988-89 Prince of Wales Conference Finals, Game 6. The reason for me wanting to plunk down some greenbacks and take a trip in the Wayback Machine was to witness retribution for an unpenalized, viscious and brutal attack on Flyers' Left Winger, Brian Propp, by Montreal Canadiens' defenseman, Chris Chelios. The following is what I would have paid cold, hard cash to see...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR-ZgMz3FIU


The third and final pick would be to see the immortal Bobby Orr play the game. He is one person that the price of a scalped ticket becomes immaterial.




Where would the Wayback Machine take you???

Thanks for reading...

SYF
November 4, 2008 10:52 AM ET | Delete
First off, SYF.... you are the man. Pulling a rabbit out of your hat (...I take a 7-1/2) with the first true counter culture cartoon not meant entirely for the elementary school crowd.Set the Wayback for Saturday May 24th, 1980 so that I can take Leon Stickle to the eye doctors prior to Game 6 of the Finals between the Flyers and Islanders, and right one of the most egregious wrongs in the history of the Stanley Cup. The Flyers may not have ultimately won the Cup that year, but they never should have lost it on such a blatant blown call.
November 4, 2008 11:12 AM ET | Delete
PFF - You rock! What a great choice to take the Wayback Machine back to Mr. Stickle's house before the game to ensure his new prescriptive lenses were indeed ready for the game that night. He sure as heck needed them! Nothing up my sleeve...presto. Ooops...must be the wrong hat.
November 4, 2008 8:31 PM ET | Delete
Great read. You just accomplished the SYF version of the Wayback Machine for some of us with your well written reflections.
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