I couldn't remember what I wanted to post about. So I'll jump right into something educational.
Buying a Flyers jersey is alot like becoming a major sports scout nowadays. There's a science, a flair, a history, and touch of luck involved anytime you pick out the old orange and black 100% double knit polyester sweater with Water repellent Bead Away™ X-trafil fabric. You have to live with your decision and you can play it safe and wait until a veteran star center appears or you can jump the gun and beat everyone to a fine promising young lad you can call your own. Or you can get a real flop.
I'm not going to get into 'old' jerseys vs 'new' NHL jerseys. At first I hated these new jerseys but they've kinda grown on me. What we really need to do is find out what you want to say about yourself:
The Amonte: Though not quite as bad as the 'Dopita' the Amonte screams out "I happened to be flying into Philadelphia to visit some relatives and they took me to my first live hockey game. I recognized the name Tony Amonte (from such star-studded films as Youngbloods and Sudden Death) and I went and paid over $200 for this utter trash.
Remember his hit in the Brawl Game vs Ottowa? Yea, it was a beauty. Remember anything else from his career as a Flyer? No one else does either.
He is a possible future Hall of Famer. He is a pretty good-looking guy. But that's about it. He always was a temporary rental -- an old player way past his prime looking for some gold with the orange and black. And that's why i found his jersey on Ebay for under $80.
See also: Oates, Ragnersson, Coffey, Vaclav Prospal
The Kim Johnnson: Do you have a disease or a disorder that prevents you from closing your mouth? Do you experience lockjaw frequently? Do you often times feel the need to suck in more air than anyone else around you?
Then Kim Johnnson is for you.
See also: Carter cry face, Coast-to-Coast goal
The Kapanen: Sami Kapanen was a good, solid player. The fact that he played on 2nd and 3rd lines and alot of Penalty Kill made him harder to notice to non-hockey fans. Sami Kaps-types aren't the ones scoring goals or showing up on the scorebaord so they don't attract as many douche bags and front-runners.
They're good to decent role players who will have occasional great games and he-who-wears-their-jersey literally bathes in glory and shits on everyone else around them when their unsung hero becomes the 'sung hero'
Dan Aikens wore the Sami jersey in our club--literally. I've never seen someone want to fight Shawn Horcoff more than Dan when he tried to fight Sami Kaps. We almost got kicked out of the bar. And anytime Sami scored the bar would explode in a roar and non-Flyers fans would fear for their lives.
See also: Darci Tucker hit, Sami Bammi, Lego Shaped head
The Ex-Flyer: It's bound to happen when you role the dice. Spot an exceptionally gifted youngster you think could blossom into the future stardom of the franchise? Just hope you don't get burned too early or you end up with a decent player who left the Orange and Black early and in about 10 years from now they'll be known as 'whatever-team-they-re-on-nows' and not 'Flyers'
--A) The Umbergs: Hey Meghan, Umberger is thge man. Oh god, that's some sick goal scoring in the postseason! Now I love the guy and frankly, I would love to see you in a #20 as your first Flyers jersey but we can't keep the trio of him, Richards, and Carter. One of these young guns is going to go for bigger money somewhere.
Ooops, it's R.J.!
I still love the jersey though. Don't be ashamed. (Pffftt)
See Also: Mouthpiece chewer, Unexcited arm-pump
--B.)The Eags: Tom Fox. You wanted someone badass. You wanted someone fearless. You wanted someone who was an agitator and who, when he shaved his head, looked like a Nazi. You wanted someone who craved opposition blood and someone I liked as a young, fast tough guy with potential. You wanted someone young with a lot of chance for upswing and maybe even goal potential! And you got all that in more with Ben Eager!
It's a damn shame you didn't want someone who was going to stay a Flyer longer than the rest of that year.
See Also: Billy Tibbits, Rapist, Intimidating a Wtiness
The Briere: Don't believe the hype. Don't ever believe the hype. The Briere is easy to spot. Usually there's an 'S' somewhere in their name you could easily replace with a dollar sign ($). I can't find one in Briere'$ name but no difference. They're the big name with the big paycheck and the average output.
Ask Chris Czech. Chris, is your Jersey weighing you down? Because it sure looks like it's weighing Danny B the fuck down. Here's a joke for everyone: How do you make $6.5 Million invisible? A: Put it on skates on a line between Jeff Carter and Scotty Hartnell.
Actually the Briere isn't a bad player. They're usually just an 'overrated' player. When they come to a team the jerseys fly off the shelves like wildfire. They're everywhere and while some are true hockey fans, a good chunk of The Briere don't know an icing from their ass.
See also: The Briere Bunch, Pulling your groin, cocaine
The Knubs: The Knubs is alot like the anti-Briere. Where the Briere is usually overrated the Knubs is highly underrated. He's usually the key cog in a team's top line and the player who's jersey you see the least. He doesn't score the most goals. He doesn't have many--no wait--any highlight reel material. But he's solid through and through. He knows his role on the team and he plays selflessly and at 110% at all times. Another Knubs would be Kimmo Timo--and I know the Z-man has one of them. You don't hear their names alot--but they're clutch to victory and obviously anyone wearing one is a true fan who understands the game.
Kudos to Meghan for her recovery from the Umbergs in picking up this one. I really like Knubs and hopefully Meghan has shaken her jersey curse because I want this veteran to stay.
Nothing's better than someone plain and normal and regular like Mike Knuble potting 30 goals and don't forget that overtime goal against Washington I was there for in Game 4 I believe. What a man. And to think--this guy smokes more than anyone else on the team combined.
See Also: Bricks of Marijuana, Garbage goals
The Dopita: These are rare. Extremely rare. If you ever actually see a Dopita, walk up to her and say hello to Jiri's mom.
Buying a Dopita is like saying "believe the hype! Believe the hype!" Then scoring 4 goals in your first game in the NHL and scoring 7 more over the course of a 55-game season and being more invisible than a Briere with groin problems.
I've actually spent my entire life looking for a Dopita. I won't stop until I find one.
See Also: Optical Illusion, Fake, Fiction
The Rathje: Notice the slight giantism? Notice he's dressed and in uniform and working for his paycheck? This is actually the only photographic evidence of Mike Rathje earning money as a Philadelphia Flyer (2 years - $3.5 Million).
If you like being on "Injured Reserve" and collecting a paycheck but not having to 'show up for work' or 'be mentioned ever again' The Rathje is for you.
It fits all lifestyles but really curtails to those of us who are large, lumbering, and slow. And yes, we all still remember the game in Nashville he single-handedly gave the game away. That's funny, it was his last game. 'Back' problems.
'Stay the fuck back home and we'll just mail you your check' problems.
See Also: (new) Hatcher, (new) Forsberg
The Vintage: You see alot of these and lately they've almost been becoming the 'in thing'. The older the actual jersey the more of the actual man the owner is. I still have my Hextall from when I was about 13. It's 2 sizes too small and 2 sizes too badass for any of these pansy goalies today.
Vintage jerseys are great because they're guys we already know and guys we already love. They are awesome players that spark a rich history of Flyer hockey and badass-ery.
But buying one now is the safest pick you can make. It's not like the guy who retired as a Hall-of-Famer 15 years ago is going to start playing bad. It's not like he's going to get traded soon. No one's going to make fun of you for your pick--but where's the fun in buying one after it's all said and done?
Unless you're a Jersey Curse. They are real.
People who buy a players jersey and then BAM! you turn around and they have a season-ending injury, they go into the worst slump of their career (until you burn the jersey in our backyard, dad, and the very next night Chase Utley hits his first homer in like 30 games), or out of nowhere he gets traded (see: The Ben Eager and The Umbergs. See: Tom and Meghan stay away from me or any of my favorite players) These people are real and very scary individuals. I don't wish a Jersey Curse on my worst enemy.
But for the rest of us a new The Vintage is some weak sauce is what it is. WWRHD? What would Ron Hextall Do? I'll tell you what he'd do-- after he cross checked some faggot from behind and slashed Wayne Gretky in his mouth he'd go and buy his own jersey in the past--when he was 8 years old. Then he'd think of buying a Giroux
See Also: Parent, Clarke, Lindbergh, Schultz
The Your-Last-Name: Who's gay again, I forget? Oh right. You. This is the best way to remind the world. If you get your nickname or you were a marine who fought in Iraq and the Flyers recognized you and already made it for you and presented it to you during intermission-- I guess it's ok.
It's actually hilarious if you get something rude like a "#88 CONCUSSD" or a "#69 BJs4CASH" or a "#99 GAMBLE"
What pisses me off is the really fat guys who get "#1 MITZBURN" or the little 10-year old "#00 RYAN". It's like c'mon, are you afraid to pick a player's jersey because you already bought a Dopita? Are you the guy selling your Amonte jersey on Ebay? I couldn't very well buy another Richards jersey so I have my own "#18 CANNON" jersey I sport to every game. Not my nickname mind you, the nickname of someone very badass. Someone very much our team leader and very much a beautiful pick by me wich brings us to....
See Also: Ok for Jersey Curses, SMOKIN4 #20, HOLOCAUST #69
The Richards: The diamond in the rough. You have to get these early otherwise you start to blend in with The Briere's. All jersey's should come time stamped and approved so we know the jersey geniuses from the jokers.
If you're anything like me (which you're probably not), you bought your Mike Richards jersey his rookie year. You could see the fire in his eyes. You felt the game changing momentum in his absolute brutal hits. You knew this kid had a God damned Cannon from day 1 when he scored that goal agaisnt the Rangers in his first NHL game. The Richards is a true fan who hopped on the right horse at the right time and he is going to keep riding his horse into the Stanley Cup years and on into retirement.
Richards is my boy, and you all know it so back off. I called it early on enough and now I'm just basking in the glow. And yes, while I did have an old style jersey Richards it disappeared in the Wachovia Parking lot in what will be referred to as "not an incident" and we'll leave it at that. Ahem.
But yea, anyone can score a The Richards. Just keep your eyes open and gamble early. I lucked out, as Cannon has matured, been named Captain, has upped his offensive game, and sort of, kind of, signed a 12-year deal. Hell, I'm starting to look at this Giroux kid if Alex Z-man doesn't get his jersey soon...
See Also: Captain Cannon, Cannon'd, Shorthanded Cyborg
So really the choice is up to you. There are hundreds of ways for you to end up looking like a douche bag, a clown, a joker, a bully, a badass, a follower, a lover of 4-goal-and-done careers, and more. It all starts with the jersey and these are just a few insights into what you're saying about yourself when the boys in Orange and Black take to the ice to seek Vengeance Now. So keep your head up and your eyes peeled. And if you ever, ever, ever, see that Dopita -- call me.