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Lecavalier wanted to play in passionate hockey market

Jul 4, 2013, 11:21 AM EDT

Flyers fans Getty Images

Any of you hardcore Flyers fans who disagreed with the club’s decision to sign Vincent Lecavalier to a five-year, $22.5 million contract, sorry, but it’s partly your fault he chose Philadelphia.

“What tipped it for Vinny was the chance to play for a hockey market with passionate fans,” Lecavalier’s agent, Kent Hughes, told the Inquirer in a phone interview. “He is really impressed with the rich tradition of the Flyers.”

Hughes said the 33-year-old center, who was bought out of his previous contract with the Lightning, could have had “a much more significant contract if he made the decision solely on money, but we didn’t solicit offers from everyone. We kind of narrowed it down.”

According to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, the Dallas Stars and Montreal Canadiens were among the finalists to land Lecavalier, with Detroit, Boston, St. Louis, Washington and Toronto also showing interest.

  1. alicesrightfootesq - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    By passionate he must have meant unhinged psychopaths who are literally driven to physical violence over sports.

    • narfmoo12 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:38 AM

      You mean like when Vancouver rioted? Or Yankees fans spit on Cliff Lee’s wife? Or LA fans beat a Giants fan into a coma? Or how the 49ers and Raiders can’t play a preseason game because of violence? Or how Montreal fans threw bottles at the Flyers during the ECF a few years ago? Or how Toronto fans mocked “Boston strong”??

      • sipp84 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:56 AM

        BOOM ….couldn’t of said it better myself ..yes we philly fan our passionate about our sports and just like every other team there’s a few who take it too far

      • garydelcourt - Jul 4, 2013 at 3:01 PM

        and yet Detroit celebrates its victories in peace…

    • blackheart78 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:49 AM

      I’m gonna go out on a limb and assume a majority of the people who think the fanbase is insane hasn’t been to a game, and does not live in the area. Granted there have been incidents, some bad I agree, BUT sadly that happens in just about every city at some point. Every city and fanbase has the idiot portion in it, to say/write Philadelphia is worst and/or psychopaths is really ignorant.

      • blackheart78 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:59 AM

        I will add I do think the Flyers fan base is the fattest. I see people spend more on food at the games, then they did on the tickets. So yea, keep talking trash on the fan base, we will just sit on you. Is sitting on someone rooting for another team considered violent? LMK. :P

    • chazxcore - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:00 PM

      Just about every sports market has idiots fueled by alcohol and lack of intelligence. Philly is an easy target because their fan base cares and is extremely vocal and outspoken when their team isnt doing well. I would rather live and root for a team or city where their fans care if the team sucks. I’m surprised you didn’t pull out the “Philly threw snowballs at Santa Claus”. I only hear that every time Philly fans boo someone, almost 50 years later.

    • twpguy1964 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:31 PM

      Ahhh…Aren’t you the little drama queen!

    • laxman1944 - Jul 4, 2013 at 1:25 PM

      A-Hole Monreal fan…….

  2. dkphilly1122 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    He has a point……and true Flyer fans are happy to have Vinny as our second line center behind G. Vinny playing with Simmer and Schenner could be a nasty line. Philly fans are passionate…..sometimes a little too passionate, but I would rather be too passionate than not care like half the hockey markets.

  3. dkphilly1122 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    Violence.. Cause Violence in sports doesn’t happen anywhere else, like say LA?? Fan was in a coma out there after a baseball game.

  4. blackheart78 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:32 AM

    (insert negative comment about Flyers fanbase by disgruntled person whose team didn’t land Lecavalier)

  5. sjsharks66 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    Philly sports fans are well known as the worst fans in sports. They love their teams but they are very hostile and rude too the opposing fan.

    That being said, to say no other fan base is as bad is idiotic. 49ers/Raiders pre season game shooting, the dodgers attacking the giants fan and yes even the drunk sharks fan who hurt that young canucks fan.

    All sport cities have stupid fans. I feel bad for the passionate lightning fans. This comment from your ex captain must be like a slap in the face to your passion for your team.

    • somekat - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:38 PM

      “well known as the worst fans in sports”, followed by “to say no other fan base is as bad is idiotic”

      To say no other fan base is as bad is biased, and ignorant

      Your totally contradicting yourself in 2 our of 3 sentences is idiotic

    • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:43 PM

      The “worst fans in sports” is an absolutely ridiculous assessment of Philadelphia fans. I’ve been to plenty of Flyers, Eagles, Phils, and even Sixers games, and I’ve never so much as seen a fight. I’ve even sat with Cowboys fans in my section at Eagle’s games and they were left alone. That’s not say there aren’t drunken idiots here, but it’s completely played up by the media. That way anytime there’s an incident they can report it as “those idiotic Philly fans are at it again”. Considering I was almost assaulted in Pittsburgh by drunken Pens fans for wearing a Flyers hat tells me that Philly fans are no worse than any other fanbase. We haven’t been spoiled with championships and we still care greatly about our teams. We support our teams through thick and thin, and boo when they need a reminder to go all out. If you never take a play off you have a chance to be worshipped in this city. It’s the athletes who don’t hustle or act like they don’t care that we abuse, only bc we want them to feel the way we do about the game.

      I can fully understand Lecavalier wanting the money and to play in front of a fanbase that never gives up on the team. And we don’t boo everytime one of our dwarfs gets knocked down with no call (*ahem* Montreal). I’m very excited to see #40 out there next season, and I think a majority of my fellow Flyers fans feel the same.

    • leeeroooyjeeenkiiins - Jul 4, 2013 at 1:38 PM

      I don’t take it as a slap in the face at all. He’s said countless times that he wanted to finish his career in Tampa, and it was never his decision to leave. It would be one thing if he forced his way out and said he was tired of Tampa’s fans, but that’s not the case here. He was bought out and he had the right to go wherever he wanted for whatever reason he wanted.

  6. sergeikremlin - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    That, and a 5-year, $22M contract. If passionate fans and rich tradition were really his #1, he would have gone home to Montreal.

    • goodolejr - Jul 4, 2013 at 1:14 PM

      Yep, he took less money to come to Philly because it was about the money….?

  7. valoisjoeybfeld69 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:43 AM

    Yeah! Right! I understand why he didn’t want to play Montreal, but don’t feed us the BS about wanting to play in a passionate hockey market when he could have chosen Montreal. Spinning is not only an exercise you perform in a gym.

  8. ribs108 - Jul 4, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    YES!!! Take THAT Hab supporters!!! He chose Philly over your bloated over-20-years-ago-blessed-history. Bergevin’s hunt for a homegrown boy continues. Theodore and Ribeiro are available. If you can recycle a coach, you can surely recycle a player. C’mon Marc – go for it!!!

  9. pitpenguinsrulez - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:04 PM

    Philly: The City of Losers and a scumbag fanbase all within a trashy City

    • blackheart78 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:21 PM

      Pitpenguinsrulez…don’t ever change my man. Your words of wisdom are always thoughtful, and uplifting. Have you ever thought about quitting your job at Dairy Queen and becoming a motivational speaker? Forget the Man of Steel, the world could use a hero like you. Your MY Superman!!!

      • pitpenguinsrulez - Jul 4, 2013 at 3:32 PM

        That is by far the best comment I’ve received on this site.

  10. bogiedoc - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    a luv the bildge water propaganda pumped out by players and their agents…ahh Vinny you signed with Philly cuz they they gave you the most money and longest term. Holmgren should be fired for his mismanagement over the last 4 years. Now they are over the cap and still have big holes to fill…like a goalie. He will regret this signing as he has a number of others.

    • macjacmccoy - Jul 4, 2013 at 5:24 PM

      Once Pronger gets IR’d the Flyers will have over $4 million in cap space. That’s more then the Pens. Plus they have multiple depth defensemen they are going to try to move like huskins foster gervais. Say they move 1-2 of them that leaves them around 6 under the cap. Thats more then enough to get a goalie and a 3rd-4th liner like Gagne and if they move Coburn and his $4.5 million they could get a top 4 defensemen.

      Leaving them with a 1st line of Hartnell-Giroux-Vorachek, 2nd line of Simmonds-Lecavalier-Shenn, 3rd line of Read-Couturier-Gagne, 4th line of Laughton-Talbot-McGinn/Rinaldo. And on defense a top pairing of Shenn-Timonen, 2nd pairing of Striet-Coburn/or his replacement, 3rd pairing of Meszaros-Grossman, with Gustafsson, Lauridsen, Manning and who ever remains out of huskins foster or gervais all jockeying for a chance to crack the top 6. With Emery/Hedenberg/Thomas/Nabokov-Mason at goal.

      So where are all these huge holes and the money problems that will make it impossible to fill those holes that everyone keeps talking about?

  11. dkphilly1122 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    Pittsburgh: the second city behind Philly in PA with the crybaby fan base and players. Keep trolling, whatever makes you feel good.

    • blackheart78 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:23 PM

      Pittsburgh=Philadelphia’s Hat.

    • garydelcourt - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:57 PM

      Say what you want but at least the Pens have won a cup in the last 35 years….and this is from a Detroit fan.

  12. dkphilly1122 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:20 PM

    Flyers will be under the cap. Pronger can’t get put on the LTIR until the season begins. Plus they are trying to get rid of Coburn, which will give them plenty of money for a Goalie and hopefully Bobby Ryan. They need to work a trade out with Anaheim for Hiller and Ryan for Coburn, Read and whoever else they want. It will work for both teams.

  13. garlandone90 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    If he really wanted to go play hockey in front of passionate fans he would have gone home to play for the Bleu, Blanc et Rouge. Philly cant seem to understand that adding aging forwards wont keep the puck out of the net. Holmgren should have been canned for the mismanagement of this team over the last couple years

    • somekat - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:42 PM

      Yes, because so many top tier FA’s flock to Montreal. there is a reason every major FA they target goes somewhere else. Toronto has more appeal, and it has the same appeal as a colon exam

      Just like years ago when the Habs went after another home born guy (Briere), he chose the better franchise/fansbase/city.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 4, 2013 at 1:13 PM

      Love how Lecavalier is an over the hill, has been since he signed in Philly. But he would’ve been a hometown hero if he had signed in Montreal. Bitterness is not a good color on you, bleu blanc and rouge fit you better. It is funny that most French Canadians avoid Montreal like the plague… why is that?

  14. twpguy1964 - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    B.S. If he really wanted that, he’d be in his hometown, Montreal, where their just as passionate, or more. He wanted philly because of the cash!

    • somekat - Jul 4, 2013 at 12:45 PM

      Read the last one. The Montreal fan base is only this extreme level of passionate, and the franchise only has this amazing allure in their own minds

      They are the Cowboys of the NFL. They have been won nothing for generations (in sports terms), and every mediocre move is heralded as the missing piece. They also believe their franchise has some allure to players. Unfortunately, that is only true in their own reality, where water is dry and the sky is green

  15. wisdomnfl - Jul 4, 2013 at 1:06 PM

    Hope he’s not looking for Stanley Cup. He’ll get passion and Neanderthal antics.

    • garydelcourt - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:56 PM

      Bingo!!!

  16. girouxed - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    Thanks Vinny.

    Welcome

    • garydelcourt - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:55 PM

      Are you guys going to win a cup anytime soon?

      • girouxed - Jul 4, 2013 at 9:33 PM

        not sure.

  17. chrisk61 - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:54 PM

    the fan perspective isn’t the point. in this regard you can divide the league into thirds. one third have great fans. philly, tor, mont, vanc, winn, bost, nyr, chic, det, a few more.a third are so-so and a third are bad. the bad fan bases are also often correlated to nice weather where frankly there is a lot more to do such as the beach, boating, fishing rather than focus on sports.

    the key is whether lecav was worth getting. if this answer is yes, then a team had to make him a good deal to land him. and a good deal comes down to yrs and a no movement clause. flyers had either the balls or stupidity to do that, but that is what it took to get him. and flyers thought he was worth it. chances are the answer is somewhere in the middle — he may be worth it for 3 yrs but not 5, but someone had to offer him 5 to get the 3.

    also regarding cities, it is funny how pens fans trash philly. have you ever been to pittsburgh for an extended period of time ? sure it is ok for a long weekend. but it isn’t a major city. philly is used to being called a second rate city by new yorkers, which relatively speaking is true. but objectively pitt is a second rate city compared to philly. that shows you, on a national scale, just how bad pitt is.

    plus their captain is a little girl.

  18. garydelcourt - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:54 PM

    Rich Heritage??? You mean the two cups you won in the 1970’s by acting like the Hanson brothers from Slapshot?? I am glad that Vinny didn’t come to Detroit. Yzerman got rid of him in TB for a reason and we don’t need a clown polluting the roster up here in Hockeytown.

  19. Habib Marwan - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:55 PM

    Coming from an neutral observer / critic ….I still insist this is a really good signing by the Flyers .

    • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 4, 2013 at 8:24 PM

      It’s nice to finally agree with you on something. It must take a lot for you to admit the Flyers actually made a good move. A 1-2 punch of Giroux-Lecavalier is very exciting to me.

      • Habib Marwan - Jul 4, 2013 at 9:14 PM

        i have no emotional ties to any team 77 , sometimes my opinions are right sometimes they are … wrong. i still disagree with you about the flyers and clarkson… but he’s probably not signing there now anyways . have a good rest of your 4th of july sir!

  20. chrisk61 - Jul 4, 2013 at 2:55 PM

    the fan perspective isn’t the point. in this regard you can divide the league into thirds. one third have great fans. philly, tor, mont, vanc, winn, bost, nyr, chic, det, a few more.a third are so-so and a third are bad. the bad fan bases are also often correlated to nice weather where frankly there is a lot more to do such as the beach, boating, fishing rather than focus on sports.

    the key is whether lecav was worth getting. if this answer is yes, then a team had to make him a good deal to land him. and a good deal comes down to yrs and a no movement clause. flyers had either the balls or stupidity to do that, but that is what it took to get him. and flyers thought he was worth it. chances are the answer is somewhere in the middle — he may be worth it for 3 yrs but not 5, but someone had to offer him 5 to get the 3.

    also regarding cities, it is funny how pens fans trash philly. have you ever been to pittsburgh for an extended period of time ? sure it is ok for a long weekend. but it isn’t a major city. philly is used to being called a second rate city by new yorkers, which relatively speaking is true. but objectively pitt is a second rate city compared to philly. that shows you, on a national scale, just how bad pitt is.

    plus their captain cyndi is an undisciplined little girl who demonstrated in twice in last 2 playoffs vs flyers and then bruins. daddy danny needs to be a better father.

  21. garydelcourt - Jul 4, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    Get your Flyer tickets now! Opening night the first 10,000 fans get a limited edition 2 pack of Duracell D batteries to throw at the head of the opposing team, refs, old ladies, babies, and anyone else who looks like an easy target.

    • kingcobraman - Jul 4, 2013 at 4:23 PM

      and $1 beers …

  22. blackhawks2010 - Jul 4, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    A team with passionate fans, Your kidding right? I’m sure Vinny will feel the same after he is booed on his first shift. This sports market is an absolute joke.

    The fan base is a bunch of drunken idiots with an average education equivalent to 3rd grade, 4th grade tops.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 4, 2013 at 9:50 PM

      You clearly have NO clue what you’re talking about.

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