I have seen people use cap locks to unleash the wrath upon me when I told fellow Flyers fans that the Pittsburgh Penguins were not my most hated team.
I would say the Flightless Pigeons are in my top 5 most hated clubs but I would be hard pressed to give them a top 3 slot. Yes, they have the best player in the world on their squad. Yes they're a cross state "rival" and they have knocked the Flyers out of the playoffs the last two times they faced each other.
However, look at the overall records playing against each other and it's not even close.
There was a number of years the Flyers and Penguins were not even in the same division. From 1974 to 1989, the Penguins had exactly ZERO wins at The Spectrum out of 42 games played. Not much of a "Rivalry".
When Mario Lemieux came back from Hodgkins disease, he got a standing ovation from the Spectrum crowd. When he retired the first time on the CoreStates Ice, he was given a similar ovation. Much respect to #66.
When I think of RIVALRY, I think of a team where there was never love lost. That team is the NY Rangers, the Bullies' dance partner at this years Winter Classic.
Only one Cup since 1940, but still a tough team. Whether it's guys like Adam Graves, Theo Fleury, Ron Greschner or Brandon Dubinsky....all good players, all pests. All could be dirty if need be. All hate-able.Respect? Yes, for most of 'em.
The Rangers fans however I have no respect for.
I know Philly fans get ripped on a daily basis by outside media and fanatics alike, but the year after Pelle Lindbergh's awful tragedy and the chorus of "Buy a Porsche! Buy a Porsche!" at the Flyers goaltenders from the Rangers faithful left a bad taste in my mouth at the time and I still haven't forgotten.
This has somehow been forgotten by the mass media and fans too. Sorry, I feel that is much worse and more hateful than some snowballs, but I digress. The Rangers fans are very smug because they're an original 6 team. Very rarely you'd meet a smug Blackhawk fan.
I know people reading this are probably younger than I, and may have always hated the Penguins.
I don't ever remember going out and buying a Rico Fata voodoo doll.... Now where's that Ron Duguay voodoo doll? It's missing its Sasson jeans --
Like I said, HATE-ABLE