Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Flyers May Be Too Much for Rangers

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Flyers May Be Too Much for Rangers

Article excerpt

Flyers-Rangers, Rangers-Flyers. The last time a single hockey series attracted this kind of attention in Philadelphia was in 1987, back when the Flyers played Edmonton in the Stanley Cup finals.

That's eight years and a lot of Slava Butsayevs ago.

You look at Eric Lindros and Mark Messier and you can see the passing torch. The contest between Lindros' line and Messier's line could end up being no contest at all - the Legion of Doom is that good, that young, that big, that strong.

The guess is that Rangers coach Colin Campbell will do what he can to avoid this matchup, Lindros vs. Messier, especially at home. That tells you plenty.

You look at the defenses. It's hard to believe I'm saying this about a team that throws two guys like Brian Leetch and Sergei Zubov out there, but it seems to me that the Flyers have the better defense corps overall, from one to six. You get past the Rangers' first two pairings and you wonder. The Flyers can wear out the Rangers' defensemen, physically tire them over a long series.

You look at the issue of physicality, and demeanor and attitude. The Rangers still have plenty of talent. Don't bother denying it. Their special teams have been very good lately, and their experience is unquestioned. But you wonder, as the Flyers go about their teeth-rattling business, how much the Rangers will miss the doggedness of a Craig MacTavish, now a Flyer? Or the hard edge of an Esa Tikkanen, now snarling for Mike Keenan in St. Louis?

I can see the Flyers winning this.

In fact, I think the Flyers will win this.

But I can also see Mike Richter, goaltender. Even with everything else going on, he's still the key player of this series.

Great thing about Richter: You ask him a question, he gives you an answer. There is no bluster, no bull. Ask, answer.

Question: The Flyers?

Answer: "They're a good team. We haven't had as much success against them this year as we think we're capable of having. They obviously played well in that last series (against Buffalo). …

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