Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Definitive 1000

We are going to be counting down the Definitive 1000 things. Why are they Definitive? Because The Friendly Friends have deemed them as such.

#976 - Ron Hextall

On the occasion of his enshrinement into the Philadelphia Flyers Hall of Fame (and as I type, a 4-1 drubbing at the hands of the Caps) I hereby also enshrine Mr. Hextall into the Definitive 1000.

I'm not going to attempt to argue his place in hockey history by reciting stats. I'm not a strong numbers guy.

The following random thoughts that occurred to me while watching Hexy getting choked up while making his acceptance speech should be enough. It's our list we'll do as we please...

1. As a young pup Flyers fan who spent two days crying when Pelle Lindbergh died, the feeling of hope that sprung from Hexy's rookie season was enough to restore my faith in the Orange and Black.

2. As a tall, skinny, lanky lad I began my glorious street hockey goaltending career after seeing how Hexy stood on his head to keep the net clear.

3. I dented plenty of Mylec goal posts ringing my Air-Flo goalie stick off of them imitating Hexy's tic positioning trick. I also knocked over the net plenty of times doing this.

4. When I was 14 the Mighty Malagan begged to go to the Flyers' Wives Fight For Lives Carnival for his birthday. I waited in line forever to get my picture taken with Hexy. As luck would have it, the camera started acting up and I got to sit next to my idol for about 10 minutes while they fixed it.

5. He stood up for his a fault. Ask Kent Nillson or Chris Chelios about that.

6. He took the Flyers to within a game of the Stanley Cup against the mythically powerful Edmonton Oilers and made a city believe that the Flyers could knock off possibly the greatest NHL team of all time.

And then, of course, there's this:

That was the first of two career goals.

So we may not have a bust to display at Friendly Friends World HQ or a commemorative oil painting to present, but The Friendly Friends proudly induct Ron Hextall into the Definitive 1000.

For much better coverage of this event, please visit the best Philadelphia sports blog out there, The 700 Level. Make sure you scroll through. There is a wealth of Hexy stuff.

UPDATE: Caps 4, Flyers 3. There'll be a lot of discussion about the disallowed goal...

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